Interview with Meiko: Her Music & Her Wit

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Derived from her Japanese heritage, Meiko means ‘bud,’ or rather ‘female,’ and Meiko displays her budding charm so delicately, yet so distinctively. Her voice is resonating and her singing style is definitively unique. Meiko grew up in the teeny, tiny small town of Roberta, Georgia and moved to Los Angeles to broaden her horizons. While bartending at Hotel Cafe, she was able to book an opening slot, and then retrieved the performing bug from then on. Her singles have been featured in popular television shows, Grey’s Anatomy, One Tree Hill, Pretty Little Liars and the film 10 Things I Hate About You.

Meiko’s most recent single, ‘Stuck On You,’ was featured in Crate & Barrel‘s first ad campaign in over 5 years, and played a significant role in how the popular retail giant brands its products and philosophy. Her current EP, followed by her second solo release, The Bright Side, was released on January 29, 2013 just in time for Valentine’s Day, aptly titled You and Me. The EP contains five tracks, with three acoustic versions of her singles, and her own unique arrangements of two classic love standards.

Meiko is currently in the studio recording new music for a new album, so we’re all excited for her next release! Find out what Meiko had to chat with us about below:

GGM: In a recent interview, you recently shared your favorite places and things in LA. Since you¹re originally from a small town in Georgia, do you have any favorite places in the South?

Meiko: I’m a huge fan of southern fried chicken! My favorite places are: Gus’ World Famous Hot & Spicy Fried Chicken in Memphis, TN, and Lockett’s Kuntry Kitchen in Culloden, GA.

GGM: How do you feel about all of your singles from your self-titled debut album featured in a TV series? Some musicians hope for one to make it into a show or movie, yet all of your singles graced a TV show or film.

Meiko: I feel very lucky. I know just how big of a reach you get when you have a song on TV. “Grey’s Anatomy” is a perfect example. So many people watched that show and searched out the lyrics on Google to find me! I was amazed.

GGM: Your songs and albums are an essential display of love, life and the in-between. Is there anything you haven¹t sung about that you¹d like to?

Meiko: Not that I can think of. Life, Love and the In-Betweens really sums it up!

GGM: What difficulties, or have you experienced any, are there for women in music?

Meiko: The only thing I can think of is how hard it is sometimes to stand out amongst a bunch of “girls with guitars.” If I had a nickel for every time someone said I was just like Jewel – I could probably buy a tour bus (I love Jewel, btw – we had an amazing tour together a couple of years ago!)

GGM: What do you think of the varied stereotypes of women and men in music?

Meiko: I try not to pay too much attention to that. I am a girl and I play the guitar. But there is so much more to it than that! I am a hard worker and sure, I like playing my music for people, but I write songs for me – to get my feelings out and move on! I’m lucky enough to have people that listen and can relate to a lot of it.

Meiko was recently featured on DirectTV’s Guitar Center sessions; check out one of her performances below:

GGM: What¹s the best thing you like about making music? The worst?

Meiko: The best: being able to express something in a song – a lot of people aren’t able to do that. The worst: there is nothing bad about making music, honestly. It’s too good for the soul.

GGM: What¹s next for Meiko?

Meiko: I’m getting demos together for my next record, which will eventually turn into me making another record! I’m so excited to get this party started.

Fun Questions

GGM: What was your first album on cassette, vinyl, and/or CD?

Cassette: Mariah Carey, Emotions
CD: The Bodyguard Soundtrack
Vinyl: Prince, Purple Rain

GGM: What was your first concert? Do you have a favorite of all the concerts you¹ve been to?

Meiko: My first concert was The Smashing Pumpkins when I was in 10th grade. My favorite concert so far has been Sade in London.

GGM: What are the top 5 albums you wouldn¹t want to live without?

Mary J Blige: My Life
Sade: The Best of Sade
Aphex Twin: Come to Daddy
Edie Brikell: Ghost of a Dog
Paco De Lucia: Entre Dos Aguas

GGM: Got a guilty musical pleasure?

Meiko: Ace of Base!


Thanks so much to Meiko for interviewing with Guitar Girl Magazine!

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