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Welcome to the profiles and interviews page.

What's the point of it?

Well, for the past few years, I've been writing band profiles and interviews for The Omaha Reader, Omaha's alternative news, arts, and music newspaper. And while everything looks great in print, often the artists and label reps (not to mention anyone outside the Omaha area) rarely see the stories because they don't receive tear sheets.

It's not my fault...Anyway, at least once a week or so, I'll post a new profile or interview from a national or local indie artist. Hey, look at what I've done so far...

Holly Miranda

The cover story (3/17/10):

Holly Miranda

Singer/songwriter Holly Miranda doesn't want to talk about her past.
At least that's what I took away from the fact that she didn't answer any questions about her childhood; questions submitted reluctantly via e-mail. Of course the problem with e-mail interviews is that you never know who's really answering the questions -- it could be Holly, or her cat or someone else sitting in her Brooklyn apartment. Maybe she never saw the questions at all (since they were forwarded to her via her publicist).
Or maybe (probably) she just doesn't want to talk about her past, and the role it played in creating the swaying, beautiful, heartsick, sultry music heard on The Magician's Private Library, the David Sitek-produced album released last month on XL. The creeps at The New York Times compared Miranda to Cat Power (maybe), Feist (a reach), and Norah Jones (not even close). But the midnight throb of "Slow Burn Treason," the twinkling gasp of "Waves" and glancing looks of "High Tide" have more in common with Sinéad O'Connor's first album, The Lion and the Cobra, than any of those indie divas, thanks to Miranda's breathy, ghostly voice and the subtle trip-hop beats that underlie the record's gorgeous, textured, sexy arrangements.

So where did her music come from? You won't find out here, because Miranda didn't respond to questions about how she reportedly grew up in a strict, religious home, sneaking listens to her sister's contraband records. Or questions about how those religious rituals influenced her songwriting. Or how she fled her suburban Detroit home at age 16 to start her life again in New York City.
Instead, Miranda chose to talk about Kanye West and an incident that happened a few years ago that she called "a fluke," but that (unfortunately) continues to be reported over and over again. I asked her how much mileage she plans to drain from the Kanye story.


Attn.: bands, labels, promoters: Send promotional materials (CD's, one-sheets, demos, etc.) to:

Tim McMahan

Copyright © 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.
Revised: March 17, 2010.

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