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Freda chats with MANE about new EP, being an independent artist, and more

The enigmatic chanteuse MANE (otherwise known as Paige Renee Court) has just announced her new single Bitter (listen here) and its accompanying video (watch below).

With catchy hooks that marry pop and blues influences together flawlessly, a driving percussive force, and intricate, edgy production values, Bitter is a venomous reminder to stay away from the bad side of a good songwriter. Bitter is the first taste of what’s to come for MANE; on June 24, this talented young musician is set to release her debut EP House of Horror (stream here) – a melancholic, soulful journey through the human experience. It’s a great one! 
On top of all this, she’s also announced tour dates in Adelaide on July 15, Melbourne on July 24 and Sydney on July 29.

It was wonderful to have the chance recently to ask Paige a few questions about the EP, being unsigned and self-managed, her name change as an artist and more. Read below!

Hello Paige, hope you’re doing well!  Congratulations on the praise you’ve been getting for your recent release of your single “Bitter”.  You must be excited for the release of EP “House of Horror” on June 24th.  How long has it been in the making for?

Hi! Thanks for chatting with me. I’m really excited to release the EP! I started recording  it May 2015 and it’s been a bit of a long process getting it ready for release. I went in and out of the studio numerous times and wrote a lot of material before deciding what the final 5 tracks would be.

What inspired you to start making music as MANE?  Did you originally go by your real name, Paige Renee Court?

I actually have just changed my artist name to MANE in really recent times. Before that I was just going by my real name – I think I was just ready to change it, I’d been sitting on it for a while. The music I’m releasing is really different to what I’d been doing in the past and I think the timing was just fitting to begin this new project under the MANE banner.

I must say that the pop/indie/blues sound to your music has a unique vibe to it and your vocals really compliment the genre and vice versa.  Who are your musical influences?

I think a whole array of artists influence my music, I listen to a lot of Bob Dylan but I also listen to a lot of northern-English rock too.  But if I had to pick a few artists that I really feel have influenced my sound  I’d have to go with Sarah Blasko, Florence Welch & Ane Brun.

As an artist, you’re currently unsigned and self-managed.  Do you enjoy the freedom that provides you, or is it a lot to deal with on your own?  Down the road, would you ever consider seeking/accepting an offer from a label?

It’s great to have the freedom an independent artist has and you learn a lot from it, but it is a lot of work and it can get a bit overwhelming at times. I think hustling it out on your own is important because it allows you to begin to wrap your head around the industry and know what to look out for.  However, personally I feel you can only take yourself so far. I would 100% consider accepting an offer from a label if the opportunity arose. It’s a whole different playing field and they can help score you oppurtunities you very rarely could get yourself.

Can you tell us a little about your musical background?  How do you compose your music?

I grew up learning piano and violin and then gave it up after a little while. Music has always been a part of my identity but it wasn’t until I was about 16 that I really invested myself into it. Most of the songs I have are almost always written with an acoustic guitar but I definitely  write them with production values in mind.

What was the recording process like for “House of Horror”?

It was just about a year in the making, I went in last May with a really open mind and I didn’t want to shut myself off to any ideas. I had so much fun whilst doing it and my producer Jack had so many ideas I could bounce off of. Some of the songs we initially planned to have on the EP got axed as I wrote new ones that I felt were better and more fitting for the EP. I’m really glad I didn’t rush the recording process as I feel we really crafted my sound over the many months of going in and out of the studio.

You’ve got some exciting shows lined up in July to support the EP!  Personally, what do you love most about playing live?

Being able to perform your songs live to an audience is super rewarding. There is something so satisfying and exciting about it. It’s always nice to get positive feedback from people in the audience after the show too.

Which song is your personal favourite off “House of Horror”?  Could you us what it means to you?

Well apart from the single ‘Bitter’,  I think ‘Valley Of Doubt’ is another favourite of mine production wise.  I guess essentially, the song is about doubting yourself way more than you definitely should and feeling like your stuck in a bit of a funk that has been caused from past experiences.

Thanks so much for taking the time to answer these questions!  All the best to you!



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