Integrity. It’s the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles, and it’s also the name of local artist Mae Udarbe’s new EP, reflecting the overall theme of her powerful music.
“I wrote all the songs on my EP based on my experiences, so I thought I’d name it something reflective of that,” she says. “I didn’t just want to take a name from a song or a lyric or anything like that to make it the title.”
Completing the recording of the EP last year at Don’t Poke The Bear recording studio, the young singer-songwriter has since been holding out to release her tracks to the public. Now stepping into 2017, Mae is ready to share her unforgettable melodies which dip into genres of theatre, pop, folk and jazz.
With a song-writing style influenced by diverse musicians including Elbow, Amistat, Norah Jones and Coldplay, the colourful and expressive artist has been creating captivating music based on relatable experiences, rather than ideas – reflective in her EP’s exploration of love and loss.
“I write mainly based on my emotions, rather than ideas. It’s a little bit of both, but mainly emotional,” she says.
Inspired by a love of musical theatre as a child, along with influences from plays such as Les Miserables, her theatrical compositions in particular are clear reflections of her personality.
“I’ve always loved musical theatre so I thought because I’m not in musical theatre, I want to incorporate some of the theatrical side of my personality and my music,” Mae says, citing her carnival inspired single ‘Satisfied’ as the most prevalent theatre driven track to date. “I’m still incorporating it [theatre] pretty much for every song. I try to make it theatrical in a way with the orchestration like violins, or brass sections, or woodwind – instruments like that.”
Originally from Malaysia, Mae moved to Hamilton when she was 14 years old, before making the move to Geelong to undertake an Advanced Diploma of Music at Oxygen College where her music fully began to take shape.
Graduating from the course last year, Mae has been focused on her music, performing at a number of local events including The Open Air Showcase at Flying Brick Cider House, the Workers Club’s Band Roulette, and most recently The Great Australia Beer Festival.
“I’ve been getting good feedback. A lot of people have said they like my sound because it’s different. I was kind of afraid at the start, of how my marketing would go. Some of my songs sound alright, but some sound weird – a good weird. Like with ‘Satisfied’, the song doesn’t actually have a chorus, it just has three parts,” she says.
“I just think, I’m going to make music the way I want to write it and if people like it, then they like it. I aim to attract people, but I don’t really write for other people, I write for myself.”
When & Where: The Workers Club, Geelong – March 18
Written by Talia Rinaldo