New Voices in Rock: Margaret Glaspy

Margaret Glaspy

"I feel like song writing is another form of mythology."

Singer/songwriter Margaret Glaspy's moody, guitar-driven pop songs are not what you'd expect to hear on the current Top 40 countdown. Glaspy's penchant for raw lyrics and honest sounds harkens Elliot Smith, Joni Mitchell and other storytellers interested in making music that connects directly to fans. 

As part of our New Voices in Rock series, the Rock Hall sat down with Glaspy before a recent show and asked her about her influences, songwriting style and which posters she had on her bedroom wall growing up (hint: no Weezer or Nirvana to be found). 

Full interview transcript below. 

What do you think about today's popular music?

I don't think that I have a really direct definition of pop music. Sometimes people divide it into different camps. Things can be more popular and with a kind of a lacquer finish on it, and that's pop music. Or, songs can be interesting and gritty and that just can't be pop. I think that nowadays there's a lot of crossing over and it's always going to be evolving.

where did you get your musical inspiration?

My Mom, my Dad, my sister and my brother all play guitar, so there's always been a heavy influence of guitar in the house. My sister just had posters everywhere. My brother had posters everywhere, but the vibes were totally different.

Where my sister had Weezer and Beck on her wall, then you'd cross the hall and if my brother would let you into his room, you'd find Rancid, NoFX, Nirvana, Zeppelin, just plastered. I mean everything was covered. On my walls, I think that I actually had...This is so horrible, I think I had a Jonathan Taylor Thomas poster on my wall. Which is not cool and not rock and roll at all but, it is what it is. Our house was definitely buzzing with music and opinions.

how do you write your songs?

I feel like song writing is another form of mythology. We're creating it right now and charting, or just kind of keeping track of all of the emotions that humans have. It's so apparent that people write music to have people listen to it and feel things. They connect it to their own lives and I think that's because we're all going through the exact same things. We're all kind of writing the same songs over and over and over again, and in that, I like to be a part of that process in terms of just relating all the time.

The first time I'd ever made a full length record, it was interesting because you really feel the effects putting your all into the record and when you see it touch people,  it's kind of wild to know that those things that I felt when I was writing that in my bedroom, or the way that I put that song together, it's really resonating with someone else that I don't know at all. I think it proves that we're all a lot more connected. It's self-fulfilling to be honest, being so communal with everybody.

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