gigmit: Hi Moriah Woods! How did you get into music?
Moriah Woods: Music was always in my house growing up. My father is an acoustic guitar player with a great love for the classics like Pearl jam, Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd. And my mother plays classical violin, it was around me all the time. I started learning the violin at age 6, picked up some piano, and later moved to the flute where I spent 6 years performing in the school orchestra. Classical music for too confined for my liking and I began listening to bands such as The Distillers, Nirvana and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. When I turned 14, the rebel in me was born. I cut off all my hair, dyed it black, and bought an electric guitar with my summer job money. However, I didn’t start writing my own songs until I had left school and started traveling the US when I was 19.
What inspires you to create?
I’m inspired by the dark, painful, and (sometimes) ugly side of life. I take a very mindful look inward to better understand the world that exists around all of us. I want to make a connection with people to help others feel less alone in their sufferings by breaking the silence around various issues that are difficult to talk about such as addiction, mental health, and depression.
Tell us about your passions outside of music.
I am currently studying psychology and philosophy, teaching English as well as exploring PTSD and trauma healing through psychedelics, meditation, and therapy. I also love running, spending time in nature with my dog, Zoe, and finding outrageous ways to make myself laugh. In addition to music, I love exploring visual creativity with my partner and photographer BRAZYL and selecting the best-dried figs I can find.
How do you define success?
Success is uncovering exactly who you are in your craft and being completely ok with that person and how they’ve evolved. I believe that a lot of successful demises comes from a lack of belief. Being sincere is the biggest success any artist can have.
What do you miss about in-person performances?
Everything. Even the once hated moments like spending countless hours searching for venues. I miss building a relationship with the hosts, seeing new places and breathing in new air. Even the days of endless pizza. I miss sleeping in new places and meeting the people who came to spend the evening with me. I miss belting my lungs out for ears I know are listening. Hearing an applause. Hugging friends and basking in the energy afterwards, knowing there is another one on the way.
What’s your view of the music industry today?
It’s amazing how many resources artists have today to work completely independently. It has really helped artistic communities explode. Art heals and I’m so happy to see so many people creating. On the down side, I’m very disappointed to see how many people think artists will perform for free or without any minimum. Even more disappointing is to see how many artists who ‘want to get their shot’, are doing this for free. This completely ruins the industry for the rest of us who really need to earn a living in order to not be forced to do something that takes time away from what we most need to focus on. Our ART.
What advice would you give to an aspiring musician?
Most importantly stay true and honest to yourself, keep digging as deep as you can to find that truth no matter how difficult or painful it might be. Don’t ever think that things are just going to happen. No one will ever come knocking on your door. You need to bring your door to them. You must be married to your work and willing to do the mountains of hard work and self promotion. Learning what you’re worth is pivotal and also how you deal with criticism and rejection. There is always something that can be improved. The work is never finished but don’t make yourself crazy by trying to make something perfect. Remember to take time for the other things in your life.
Thanks for talking to us Moriah, what can we expect from you in the future?
I’m currently working on two albums. An intimate solo/acoustic album with lots of tracks I’ve performed over the years along with some new ones that I’ve never recorded and released. On top of this, I’m releasing a full band album, addressing human issues’ relationship to the state of our world and how we are the cause of its current state. It is a prayer for awareness, peace and change.
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