February 19 2019

Annie O Presents: Addi McDaniel

New York-Standard Sounds
The Brooklyn-based singer hailed as “a dynamo with a brass-plated voice” by the LA Times, Addi McDaniel takes the Penthouse at The Standard, East Village as part of Annie O's series. we caught up with the talent to find out what inspires her and what we can expect from her performance.

Tell us about your debut album 'After the News’?

In the spring of 2018, I had the great fortune of recording an album of a heart-wrenching collection of songs written by Tom Siering that explore the darker side of our human experience; particularly regret, loss and grief. It was an incredible experience where I discovered just how necessary our vulnerability is and how healing it can be. 

How is 'After the News' different from your past music projects? 

I’ve been very lucky to collaborate with some ridiculously talented musicians here in NY. I have a deep love for songwriting, and have released several albums with fellow songwriter Jacqui Kerrod. Writing songs is something that I hope to be doing forever. While my contributions to After the News are as a singer and interpreter of these beautiful songs, it was very easy to connect with Tom’s lyrics. Tom’s lyrics were full of vulnerability and honesty and I really wanted to match and honor them in the vocal performance. I also find great joy in giving life to someone else’s words—finding the point of entry, taking on someone else’s point of view and making it my own.

What was it like collaborating with Tom Siering?

Working with Tom on this album required me to go deeper—exploring the full range of darkness and light in his poignant lyrics. I really appreciate that his writing touches on the kinds of things that I don’t think we spend enough time talking about. These songs forced me to take a look down the road, to contemplate death, to sit with the feelings of loss and regret, and examine the ways we cope. Tom and I are both drawn to the same kinds of poetry and songwriting, which made the collaboration very easy and grounded. 

What song off your new album do you connect with the most?

Hard to choose—-but I really enjoyed digging into “The Lacuna”. Lacuna is a word I had never heard before. It means a blank space or a missing part; a void. This song explores how sometimes a “lacuna” can form between two people. You’re speaking to each other, but no matter how hard you try, it feels like your energy, your words just sort of dissipate into this nothingness; this void. It’s something I’ve experienced in my life—and it’s pretty therapeutic to sing about. 


The weirdest shows are the ones where I can’t see anyone in the room!

Who are you listening to these days?

Susanne Sundfør’s ‘Music for People in Trouble’, Natalie Prass’s ‘The Future and the Past’, London Grammar’s ‘If You Wait’. 

Who are your greatest musical/non-musical inspirations?

There are so many! Some of my favorite musical artists of all time are Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, Rufus Wainwright, Leonard Cohen and Ben Sollee. Other things that inspire me are trees, The Blue Planet, podcasts ‘99% Invisible’ and ‘The Memory Palace’, the Maha Rose Center, Marie Kondo, Celtic mythology, Miranda July, Annie Baker, Edible Schoolyard NYC!

What is your favorite part of performing?

Connecting with people! The weirdest shows are the ones where I can’t see anyone in the room! Feeling present and connected to other humans in a room through music is perhaps the greatest, most humbling feeling in the world. 

What can we expect from your show at The Standard, East Village as part of the Annie O Music Series?  

I’m so excited for this show! I’m so lucky to be joined by musical geniuses Ethan Pakchar, Jamie Eblen and Tim Basom. The set will be a mix of dark and light, reflective, authentic, sweet and fun—featuring songs from ‘After the News’ as well as new tunes from the upcoming album! 

What's next for you?

Feeling inspired- in the writing zone for an upcoming album! Working on a mix of songs with several collaborators. Very excited to lay these down in the studio later this year! More shows to be announced soon- check addimcdaniel.com for the latest! 

INTERVIEW BY
Annie O