Christina Munsey – Crystal Skies

Christina Munsey – Crystal Skies

 

ARTIST NAME:  Christina Munsey

 

SONG TITLE: Crystal Skies

 

EP TITLE: for me, or for you

 

RELEASE DATE: March 6, 2020

 

GENRE: Electro-pop

 

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Christina Munsey, like many talented young singer-songwriters today, began singing at a very early age.

 

Young talent isn’t a rare commodity these days but young talent with a distinguished voice, polished writing skills, poise, and a sense of self and determination isn’t commonplace.  And in an era where having teams of people writing one single song is considered the norm, Munsey is her own team, writing effortless melodies and lyrics that float along to her dreamy vocals.

 

Electro-pop and indie vibes flow together seamlessly as she sings about everyday teen angst on her debut EP, for me, or for you.

 

Munsey’s songwriting began to take shape when she was 16 years old and comes from an internal, moody place based on personal experiences and draws inspiration from the world around her.

 

Melodies come into her head before lyrics, starting with a hum until they sound like she wants them to sound, then come the words, which she starts piecing together to form the lyrics and the phrases that form the song.

 

“Recently, I’d felt that my melodies were starting to sound too much like everything else I’ve heard so I started picking objects from my writing room and creating melodies that go with the shapes or patterns of the object. That’s become my go-to when I’m stuck.”

 

Her songs are also summoned from nature, especially storms which conjure up something that triggers a wave of creativity that is only harnessed through her music.

 

“All of the songs that I have written have been influenced by my fascination with storms. I never feel fully in my creative element until there are heavy clouds, rain, and thunder accompanying. Something about it triggers a different part of my brain, that allows me to completely dive into whatever I’m working on.”

 

Munsey doesn’t have a formula for writing songs.

 

Sometimes she’ll pick up an electric guitar (she also plays classical guitar and piano) to create basic chords to sing over.

 

But other times “I’ll be walking outside and listening to the sound of my shoes hitting the concrete, and I’ll hear a melody in my head and quickly reach for my phone to record it.

 

Finding inspiration has never been a hard thing for her.

 

“I’ve had many instances where I can’t figure out how I’m feeling about a situation and with no intention to write about it, it inevitably makes its way onto paper. That’s also why it’s so addicting, so cathartic. When feelings are all you have at first, it’s important to lay things out and get comfortable with saying them out loud.  But when you craft them into actual sound, it’s a whole other level of contentment.”

 

Munsey released her very first song “Rose Gold” (with producer Au Lune) in 2019.

 

Now, with for me, or for you, brings five new songs (and an interlude) that make up the EP.

 

The lead track, “Crystal Skies,” glows with layered textures and atmospheric melodies, electric guitar, and high hats.

 

 

“It’s a track that was written completely backward, in that, I wrote the pre-chorus and chorus first, and I came back later and wrote the rest of the song.”

 

Other songs such as “Hazy” and “Apart” come from a very delicate place.

 

“‘Hazy’ is about being at the end of yourself and not knowing how to cope with a lost relationship.”

 

‘Apart’ comes from the same raw place and was the first song she ever wrote on an electric guitar.

 

“I had been fighting with one of my friends and began realizing how toxic our relationship had become so I began writing from a place of frustration, and that’s what became ‘apart.’”

 

Recovering was a slow process for Munsey but writing about these experiences was her remedy.

 

“I learned that sometimes things don’t make sense, but that everything happens for a reason, and I have to trust in that.

 

I learned that music is therapy and will one way, or another, allow you to get closure where there is none and get what you had been bottling up, out.”

 

Lighter tracks include “Swoony,” a word to describe having overwhelmingly intense feelings for someone and “California Glow,” which was inspired by a picture Munsey saw on Pinterest that resonated with her.

 

“The picture showed two arms reaching towards each other in a field. Studying it, my mind encapsulated a storyline of getting through a breakup and dealing with the bittersweet memories and finding light in a dark situation.”

 

As for where she sees herself fitting into today’s musical landscape Munsey says she hopes to create a whole new genre:

 

“I think the key to fitting into a musical landscape is to actually stand out. To create something that’s true to yourself while also being innovative. It’s so important to me as an artist, to be as human as possible for listeners.

 

I want to be as true and transparent to my work and as I can be, and I hope that through that, I can create a sense of approachability with people because, at the end of the day, we’re all feeling the same waves of emotion, and if I’m able to be where everyone else’s heads are at, then I’ll be content.”

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Share your life story with us.

I’ve lived in North Carolina my entire life. Growing up, I was involved in a lot of acting, theater, and singing.

 

My dad had introduced the movie, “The Phantom of the Opera” to me and I fell in love.

 

I wouldn’t stop prancing around the house and singing all the songs. Not until a few years ago, did music and songwriting really become my passion?

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List the names of those that have supported you so far in your music career and use this opportunity to thank them.

I am incredibly grateful to have such a supportive circle of people surrounding me during my music journey.

 

My family being the biggest supporters, my production team, my local community, and additionally, all my close friends who have helped me so much in my confidence.

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Narrate your experience while recording in the studio or while touring.

My experience while recording is always different. It honestly depends on the song that I’m tracking vocals for.

 

I think it becomes very mentally-taxing when you’re having to write songs that are uber personal to you, and you’re letting in all the emotions that you felt when you wrote the song. It’s almost bittersweet, because you let a lot of feelings into the forefront of your mind, but there’s also some closure that comes out of getting it all out.

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Discuss your songwriting.

I started songwriting as therapy. It became a safe space where I could just pour out all my thoughts and create something so personal and meaningful to me.

 

As I began writing, I started learning so much about myself and how I was feeling now.

 

I’m very much a reserved, keep-to-myself type of person and way too often, have I felt indecisive about how I feel.

 

Songwriting was my gateway to match my feelings with words and flourish it into what it feels like to be inside of my head.

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Elaborate on your future projects.

I think the biggest thing moving forward is for me to keep creating and releasing content.

 

I have so many thoughts that I want to put out into the world, and it’s important for me to stay consistent with it.

 

I’m planning on releasing several more singles this year, as well as some collaborations with other artists, and I couldn’t be more excited!

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Tell us what you are doing to increase your fan base.

My strategy to increase my fanbase is to first, be approachable and relatable.

 

I think that it’s easy to lose the connectivity with fans once you reach a certain point of fame, so I think that being grounded and reaching out to the fans that support you, is such an important thing. You create a loyal following that way.

 

Another thing I’m doing to help increase my fanbase is playing live shows where you can meet a whole community of people and share what inspires you and your unique journey into the music business.

 

People love backstories and hearing what you’re doing and how you’ve gotten to where you are. It makes them want to be a part of it.

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Tell us that point in time you wanted to give up on your music career.

I’m not sure if there’s a specific event that has happened that has made me want to give up on my music career. If anything, it’d be me.

 

There’s been a lot of self-deprecating moments as I’ve pursued this career. It’s hard when your success is dependent on what people think of you and your music.

 

It’s your job to study and understand what people are liking and mold your sound with the new waves of music.

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Go into detail on how you make your instrumentation or melody.

I have many different techniques that I use to create melodies, but the most recent being that I come up with super simple chords on the guitar or piano and start humming and forming random words until they make sense.

 

Usually, I don’t have a certain thing I want to talk about. I let whatever I’m thinking subconsciously pour out onto my paper and go from there.

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Tell us your complete understanding of music licensing.

Music licensing is very important as you are getting into the industry because it ensures that no one can steal your original material.

 

It’s a seal of approval that your content cannot be taken because it’s copyrighted.

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Tell us your favourite genre of music.

I grew up on a lot of Fleetwood Mac, Kansas, and Styx, so 70’s rock has always held a special place in my heart, but I think that I most enjoy pop/indie/alternative music. Anything that has cool textures, interesting sounds, and an atmosphere vibe has my attention.

 

But I’ve grown to understand and appreciate so many different types of music, so I tend to jump around a lot when listening to songs.

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Tell us the theme of most of your songs.

My songs are all curated from real experiences, so with that, comes a lot of personal stories that have made up my songs.

 

Most recently, my songs have been about frustration, heartbreak, and healing.

 

There have been several events these past two years that have inspired my music and I think it’s important to get it out as a need of moving on, so I think that the main theme of most of my songs is moving forward.

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Elaborate on this song.

My song, “crystal skies,” became one of my favorite songs from my EP, for me or for you.

 

It is about being somewhere you don’t want to be and asking yourself why you are even there.

 

 

It’s a self-realization of looking around and noticing people putting on facades and the admission of finding yourself doing some of the same.

 

So, it’s really highlighting the need to be real and transparent with yourself and others as a path for more meaningful relationships.

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Discuss digital distribution and streaming.

As an independent artist, it’s very important to understand everything that goes into the music business.

 

This year alone, I have learned more about business than I have in all my years of school. I read music business books like crazy and have been actively studying different techniques to help ensure me on the right path.

 

I’ve learned a lot about digital distribution and several streaming services. I’m most familiar with the main companies and services such as DistroKid, CD Baby, Reverbnation, for digital distribution, and Spotify, Apple Music, and Soundcloud, for streaming.

 

Learning how to manage your artistry with these platforms is essential to your success, so studying your growth with the analytics that they provide will help a lot.

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Tell us numerous ways that artists can boost their revenue.

There are many ways that artists can boost their revenue. One is by playing at live events such as house shows, weddings, cafe gigs, etc. Those are the most obvious ways of adding more money in your pocket, but I think there’s also a place for teaching music, whether that’s songwriting, mentoring other artists through the business side of things, helping someone play an instrument, or even with how to market yourself.

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Tell us your opinion on self-training and enrolling in an educational institution to study music.

I have been self-taught (music) almost my entire life, up until recently, where I have mentors and coaches to help guide me and sharpen my craft.

 

Arguably, I’d say that self-training is one of the hardest, but the best things to do as an independent artist.

 

You become your own motivation, you control when and how long you practice, and in this, you’ll grow as a musician. Not enrolling in an educational institution to study music helps you get creative and shows you no limits.

 

There is an endless amount of resources to work with, being the internet, fellow artists, and books.

 

Many people stop with their study of the music business after classes in college, but as someone who doesn’t enroll, it never stops.

 

Soaking in music is constant, and I think it really tests how much you really want to be an artist.

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Go on at length on what it takes to write a hit song.

 I think the first step to writing a hit song, is to not tell yourself that you’re writing a hit song. It’s reverse psychology. As confusing as it may sound, psyching yourself up for writing a hit is only going to create frustration and writer’s block. It’s going to make you overthink everything you’re doing.

 

The key is to study and consume the type of music you’re trying to create and think like that artist.

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State the reason for choosing the title of your EP.

The title of my EP, for me, or for you came to place so naturally. I had just finished writing my interlude, “for me, or for you pt.1” which talks about a new beginning, and I thought that it most resonated with the theme of the album.

 

To me, the phrase means several things, but mainly, I thought, “Am I writing this for a certain person so that they’ll understand exactly what they put me through, and how I was able to come out on the other side, or was it more for me? For therapy and closure?… Who am I doing this for?”

 

Ultimately, maybe it doesn’t matter who the EP is for if I was able to get everything out, but it meant a lot that I was writing this for me.

 

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