The stylish and eclectic singer-songwriter from Oakland named Mara Hruby has delivered an emotionally drenched EP entitled "Archaic Rapture". This work is a glimpse into her heart with musical influences from artists such as Julie London, Patsy Cline, The Moonglows, Curtis Mayfeld and Brook Benton. Mara dug deep into her soul and emotions to give her fans songs that were real and raw. Mara also revealed intimate personal experiences that inspired her work.
"I was with a guy who cheated on me with six women. That's why I am doing six songs, [and] why I'm calling the album Archaic Rapture. It was the darkest point in my life. Choosing the songs that I'm doing on this project was my way of coping with the reality of it,” says Mara.
We had the pleasure of speaking with Mara about her new project. Check it out.
My Soul, Myself & My Music … I would describe myself as a sensitive soul that is in tune with who I am as a person. I feel life very heavily and I always try to open my mind to new perspectives beyond my own. As an artist, I would say it's the same, just directed towards my craft. I am a very passionate artist and individual.
"Archaic Rapture" … My new EP is named ‘Archaic Rapture’ and took me about a year and a half to complete. It was a labor of love and heavy pain. The concept emotionally hit me 2 weeks after I left my boyfriend of 3 years because he cheated on me with 6 women. Immediately after that reality became clear to me, which was in March of 2010, I traveled to Florida to spend a little over 2 weeks in Manasota Key with my aunt and uncle. I was listening to a lot of Julie London and something within clicked. I related to the power of traditional torch songs and knew then that I would dedicate my next body of work to my personal heartache as well as Julie London and the power of her sorrowful songs. Once I went back home, I began the process of making those songs my own and grieving/healing/discovering through that creative evolution.
Crying … My goodness, haha. TODAY! (February 8th)
‘Cry Me A River’ … My personal heartbreak and how the song spoke volumes about my personal experience. The movie "V For Vendetta" was the original trigger for the inspiration. The song played twice in that movie, and when I first saw it in the theatre I just lost my mind. That's when my Julie London obsession began, in 2005.
The Sound, the Color, the Taste & the Feel … My sound is honest, organic, and purely created within my own experiences. It's soulful, folky, jazzy, and sensitive. If it were a color, it would be black, simply because to some individuals it may appear as one thing. But, what makes it what it is, is a natural blend of many things to create one bigger picture. It would taste like comfort food right at the moment you crave it, even if you didn't know that's what you desired, and it would feel warm, comforting and relaxing.
The Soul Of The Bay … Our (Bay Area) culture and history alone are powerful enough to be the reason. Our music culture runs very deep and a lot of musicians traveled through here to train, perform, and record here. Sly Stone, Freddie Hughes, Darondo, Steve Miller Band, The Tubes, The Pointer Sisters, Tower Of Power, etc. all came from The Bay Area.
I’m listening to … My heart and intuition.
Rap Name In The Rap Game … Sally Mae.
Rap Album … Aquemini.
Favorite Hip Hop Song … Liberation.
Pure Love … When love is pure, it's inspiring, warm, honest, satisfying, and activates your natural happiness within. Dopamine is one of the best drugs when it's healthy and well balanced within your life.
Broken-heart type of love … When hearts are broken you feel pain, darkness, sorrow, resentment, and a deep running sadness. It's one of the worst feelings to feel and an emotional relationship loss feels as real as a life passing. I experienced those two simultaneously.
Musical Love Child … If Brook Benton and Brenda Holloway had a son that created music with a gritty blues feel merged with a country rock kind of feel, I would love to have a musical love child with him. I would call our child Matterson. Can I do that? Haha, I think I bent the rules a tad.
Guilty Pleasures … Singing N'Sync songs out loud randomly. I also really like to clean.
Makes Me Smile … Things that make me smile are really good food, really good music and my friends. I like natural elements that make me feel small compared to the universe i.e. the ocean, large fields, trees, animals, the sun, moon, and stars.
My Musical Influences … Billie Holiday, Julie London, Ella Fitzgerald, Jimmy Reed, James Brown, Aretha Franklin, Brenda Holloway, Brook Benton, Patsy Cline, Patti Page, The Rolling Stones, The Steve Miller Band, Otis Redding, Al Green, Sam Cooke, Sugar Pie DeSanto, Sonny Til and The Orioles, Sade, Chet Baker, A Tribe Called Quest, D'Angelo, Jamiroquai, Bjork, Outkast, …..the list will continue if you allow me to, so I will stop there haha!
Hood Slang … Being that I'm from Oakland, I've lived through a large evolution of slang. lol. "Hella" is the general common word that has definitely expanded beyond California now. It's used as an expression to say "a lot of" or in place of "really" or "very" i.e. " I'm hella nervous to release my new EP!" Do people outside of The Bay say "moded"?! lol I used to say that in school all the time haha "moded and corroded…" haha. It's used like a correction, to tell someone they were wrong or mistaken once they have been proven wrong.
Top Ten Favorite R&B/Soul Love Songs
This is a really hard question to answer. I truly want to include soooooo many more. I see love songs not just as the happy ones, but the sad and angry ones. So….In no particular order…..
1. Bobby "Blue" Bland – I'll Take Care Of You
2. Brook Benton – So Many Ways
3. Otis Redding – That's How Strong My Love Is
4. Mable John – Your Good Thing
5. Minnie Riperton – Completeness
6. Emily King – Distance
7. Lauryn Hill & D'Angelo – Nothing Even Matters
8. Anthony Hamilton – The Point Of It All
9. Lianne La Havas – Everything Everything
10. Janelle Monae – Say You'll Go
Something You Didn’t Know … I went to circus camp for 7 summers of my life …Camp Winnarainbow to be exact. Before you laugh… go ahead and look it up. You will either be impressed or laugh even harder once you do. Either way, that camp changed my life!