Glitter ‘n’ Guitars with Mae Krell
Written by Ry Lei
Published Aug. 27, 2018
Photo by Chelsea Pineda
Sometimes a guitar, glitter, and a goal is all you need.
Based in New York City, this 19-year-old singer/songwriter is slowly making their way through the music scene. And they’re not moving with no direction. Krell was raised on a diverse collection of iconic musicians. On the emotional spectrum, they’re influenced by David Bowie, Nirvana, and Janis Joplin. On the formulaic spectrum, the influences of Elton John, Santana, and Simon & Garfunkel come into play. Each time you listen to one of Krell’s tracks, it’s not hard to trace back their inspirations.
Where their story begins, however, is not on stage with guitar in hand or glitter on face, but in the audience with a camera strapped around their neck. At age 17, Krell began shooting concerts for Rolling Stone. The opportunity to photograph for an already successful and significant brand gave Krell much more than just photos to take home: a kickstart to a new chapter of their life.
“I wrote my first song at 16—which is pretty late compared to most people I’ve met,” Krell commented. “When I started shooting shows and really experiencing live music though, is when I really realized that I had a need to be on stage and play live.”
Soon after that first step, Krell began to dive into an ongoing songwriting process. Like the metropolitan culture they’re surrounded by, it’s often spontaneous, urgent, and constant.
Their EP, Anabasis, contains four songs detailing Krell’s personal journey in tackling identity, fear, and change; there’s a clear shift from darker to lighter themes and lyrics from song to song that helps shape the story.
“Anabasis is a greek word, and in literary terms means: an ascent from the underworld,” explained Krell. “I wanted to be able to represent going from the dark places to finally seeing a glimpse of light and Anabasis was the perfect word to describe that.”
This is Mae Krell, and they’re just getting started.
See the rest of the articles from issue three here