Brian Mackey is spreading a message of honesty to fans across the country with his eclectic blend of pop-rock and folk-inspired lyrics. “My songwriting is really just an autobiographical musical,” muses the New York based artist. “Ironically enough, I've never been a fan of musicals.”
Mackey is gearing up for his single release, "America", this Spring. To follow this Summer, he is busy working on his first full-length album, "Broken Heartstrings" in Nashville, TN with his long-time producer Sam Ashworth, who produced his Honest Love EP, as well as several other songs on his "Red EP".
“My next album is about putting aside all fears of saying the wrong thing,” he explains. “It’s about putting the rose colored glasses on the floor and smashing them with your foot, and feeling comfortable with the uncomfortable." Early standouts on the project include "The Day", "Are You Listening","Philadelphia" and "Rich Hearts Lullaby."
Some of Music City’s finest singer/songwriter/musicians have joined Brian on his projects: producer/singer/songwriter Sam Ashworth, son of songwriter and producer Charlie Peacock (Civil Wars, Switchfoot, Amy Grant) and Six Pence None The Richer’s guitarist Matt Slocum. On his upcoming album, "Broken Heartstrings", famed guitarist Jeff King (Reba McEntire, Carrie Underwood) and bass player, Mark Hill (Keith Urban, Reba McEntire) both recorded with Mackey.
Honest Love is Mackey’s third EP. His first EP, Feng Shui for Slobs, was released in 2008 and the second was Brian Mackey Red released in 2009. Brian's first EP, Feng Shui for Slobs, garnered the placement of "Painted Red" on the Disney TV show, Naturally Sadie, a milestone achievement for his first EP.
According to Mackey’s manager Beth Slocum, “Brian’s new songs are about going somewhere he hasn't really gone before publicly, saying the truth that others are afraid to say, and all the while, sharing his own life experiences.”
“Honest Love gave me a little spark that lit the fuse that's blowing up into something that I really feel this time around,” elaborates Mackey. “When you strike a balance between thought and emotion, then you have something that translates to others.”
Honest Love was so well received that songs from the project were featured on Viso Music, US Airways In-Flight Radio, and the Songs of Love for Japan compilation, alongside stars like Sara Bareilles and Ani DiFranco. Mackey was also recently selected as a SuperCuts® Rock the Cut Artist Ambassador.
Mackey’s songs, including “Color Blue” and “Honest Love,” have also been sought out for use in motion pictures The Boys of Abu Ghraib, starring Sara Paxton (Last House on the Left) and Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings); 29,000 Wishes, 1 Regret, directed by Oliver Robins (Poltergeist); Fake; and Fathoms Deep. "Honest Love" also garnered some advertising and TV placements: Unicef's "Live Below the Line" campaign, and "Out on the Road" in Travel Channel's, "The Layover" with Anthony Bourdain.
Whether it is a winter view through a car window or a morning sunrise, Mackey finds inspiration everywhere. “There are so many experiences in life that you use to paint your picture. It could be the smell of the air, or a look in the eyes of somebody that you meet along the way. It could be a conversation with an old friend. It could be a TV show. It could be a powerful romantic thing or something funny. It could be somebody dying or somebody being born.”
The Florida native’s influences are as varied as his inspirations. Mackey, a classical pianist, loves modern masters Bob Dylan, Jim Croce and The Beatles as much as composers Mozart and Beethoven.