Interview: 2017 Must-Know - Maggie Rogers

Maggie Rogers is THE chosen one. Armed with all the magical emotive dance-inspiring earworms of her 'Now That The Light Is Fading' EP (out on February 16th), an upcoming debut TV performance on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon, a well in advance sold-out North American headline tour, and a #1 fan in Pharrell Williams, 2017 truly belongs to none other.

MUST-LISTEN: 'Alaska', 'On + Off', 'Dog Years'.
YOU WILL LIKE, IF YOU LIKE: Lykke Li, Julia Michaels, Haim, Ryn Weaver, Kacy Hill, Lisa Mitchell, Shura, Christine And The Queens, The Japanese House, Phoebe Ryan.

CDM: How does your songwriting process work?
MAGGIE ROGERS:
There are some people I know that have incredible discipline as songwriters. They’ll write 100 songs to get the perfect 20, or hold themselves to write a song everyday. I’m not one of those people. I write sporadically - maybe one or twice a month if I’m lucky, but when it’s time to write, I always know exactly what I have to say. Songs come quickly, often in 15 minutes or less, and so the challenge in songwriting becomes just being ready to catch the songs when they fall from the sky.

CDM: What do you think is the difference between a good song and a great song?
MAGGIE:
I think time often tells the difference between good and great, but in general, I think a song is successful if it’s truly vulnerable. If you can make yourself fully vulnerable and open in a song, then inevitably you’re tapping into something that isn’t just yours, it’s human. And that has the power to unite an infinite amount of people.

CDM: At what age did you write your very first song ever, and what was it about?
MAGGIE:
I wrote my first song when I was 9. It had two verses, a bridge, and a rap section. It was about a pickle my brother had dropped on the floor during dinner, whom I named Bob.

CDM: What do you hope for people to take away from listening to your music?
MAGGIE:
I honestly don’t really think about other people when I’m making music. There’s this Björk quote I really love, where she says the more selfish you can be with your music, the more giving you’re being with your audience. I really believe that to be true.

CDM: You sing about wanting to find clarity (and then finding some!) within your life in 'Alaska', but with life always full of surprises, do you think it’s possible for humans to feel content with the level of clarity they have achieved?
MAGGIE:
I think we are completely in charge of how content we feel. Clarity is something that often has to be earned or worked towards, but being present and content is always an open option.

CDM: One of my favourite lyrics of yours in 'Alaska' is when you say, "I walked off an old me." Is it important for people to be constantly evolving? Is change a good thing?
MAGGIE:
Evolution, especially at the period of time when I wrote ‘Alaska’, was really important for me. Change has always been a really difficult thing, but something I’ve always welcomed. I think that’s where real growth happens.

CDM: If M.A.G.G.I.E. R.O.G.E.R.S. were an acronym, what would each letter stand for?
MAGGIE:

Magical
Autonomous
Giggling
Grateful
Introspective
Enthusiastic
Resilient
Optimistic
Glittery
Earthly
Receptive
Searching

CDM: Your dancing in the 'Alaska' music video is so rad! Will you try and incorporate dance into your live show once you start touring your new music?
MAGGIE:
I just got back from the first leg of this crazy sold-out tour and I can tell you with a lot of enthusiasm and excitement that, yes, there is a whole lot of dancing happening on stage and I am very happy about it.

CDM: We’re super excited about your new EP! What can you tell us about it?
MAGGIE:
The EP is a collection of songs I made while I was still in college. While all the songs are mine, I had a lot of fun working on production with friends - I think music can be so much fun when it’s collaborative. The album art is a photo I took three years ago in the Summer and when I stumbled upon it, I just knew it would be perfect. I’m really proud of these songs and I can’t wait for people to hear them!

CDM: What’s on your bucket-list?
MAGGIE:
I’d like to hike the Appalachian Trail sometime before I’m 30.

CDM: You’re one of our 'must-know’ artist picks for 2017... who are yours?
MAGGIE:
Muna, FLETCHER, Topaz Jones and Tor Miller.

Click here to check out more of Coup De Main’s 2017 Must-Know Artists.

Watch Maggie (and her song 'Alaska') make Pharrell Williams cry below...