Check out our interview with indie rock & folk singer-songwriter Mystee who will be releasing her latest single “deep end” on June 3rd.
“deep end” is a celebration of the strength that it takes to pull yourself out of hard times and come out stronger on the other side. Inspired by artists like Big Thief, Soccer Mommy, and Phoebe Bridgers, Mystee bends the lines of genre with “deep end,” combining glittery guitar lines and soft vocals with punk ethos.
Follow Mystee @mysteemusic
Hi Mystee, please tell us a little about you?
Hi! I am a singer songwriter, originally from Boston, but I’ve spent most of my adult life in Cardiff, Wales. I’m now living in Fort Collins, CO, which has been an unexpected music haven for me. It’s been a long journey to get to here and I’m excited to show the world my latest work!
Describe yourself in 3 words?
Resilient, creative, goofy
How did you get started in the business?
I first picked up a guitar when I was six years old, after I saw someone’s dad playing at my preschool. Ever since, it’s been all I know. I went to music school in Chicago and when I graduated I moved to Cardiff to pursue a masters in songwriting. There, I formed a band, Glass Jackets, that took over my life for a few years, but things got complicated with visas and Covid. I started Mystee as a way to bounce back after losing everything for the third or fourth time.
How has this changed your life?
Mystee has changed my life more than I thought it would. The release of my first two singles went really well. I was living in Boston at the time, where I did not want to be, and the empowerment I found by releasing music all by myself without relying on a band or an ex or anything really gave me the confidence to take a risk and move across the country to pursue music again.
We’re sure you have been asked this million times but how did you get in the industry?
I started out playing guitar as a kid and I’ve been writing songs ever since. Going to school for music has helped me hone my craft, but collaborating with other working musicians in the UK and US, as well as living through a lot of turmoil, has really added to my creative pallet.
Describe your sound in 3 words?
Indie folk pop
Who influenced you and why did you choose to make music?
My all time favorite songwriters are The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Fleetwood Mac etc. but lately, I’ve been into artists like Phoebe Bridgers, Soccer Mommy, and Big Thief. I think that newer wave of indie is a really cool vibe that I want to hop on.
Do you play any instrument?
I play guitar. I can also play bass and harmonica but guitar is the one I’m most solid on.
Do you ever get nervous?
Hahahah yes! There was a time where I would panic the entire day leading up to a Glass Jackets gig. There were factors at play there other than the performance itself. But these days, I try to have a different perspective and it helps take some of the pressure off.
Tell us about your single “deep end?”
Deep end is a celebration of freedom and self love. It’s about taking that big leap without knowing where or how you’ll land. It’s about trusting your gut, which is something I have struggled with in the past few years. I wrote this song after my friend who was teaching me how to drop into bowls on roller skates gave me a pep talk about doing it scared. “Do it scared” quickly became my mantra in skating but also in life. I wouldn’t be where I am today without that moment.
What’s the story behind the song?
During the height of Covid, when music was shut down, I was starting to feel like I had nothing to live for. Then I found roller skating. I spent every free hour at the skate park from then on out and it transformed my life. I had something to work on, people to meet. Skating turned me into someone who was strong, who did things simply because I wanted to. It’s all about risk taking and I was able to use the courage I found in skating to propel the rest of my life where it needed to go. Skating is what inspired “deep end”.
What is the most rewarding part of your work?
The best feeling in the world is when you’re on stage in front of a room full of people who are singing along with a song you wrote in your bedroom. Knowing that my songs have reached and helped other people is the most rewarding part.
What book should every entrepreneur read?
I’m not sure about entrepreneurship but my favorite book in the world is Beartown by Fredrick Backman and it’s super underrated. It’s beautiful and sad and full of great characters.
What would say are the greatest lessons you learned so far?
Do it scared! Someone recently told me that it’s all about perspective. The things that you’re afraid of now, the things that break you open and take away what makes you happy, are all leading you where you’re eventually meant to be.
What advice would you give to your younger self and why?
Trust the process. It’s not a race. I still struggle with this but I’ve always been afraid that I’m taking too long to get where I’m going.
How would your best friend describe you?
You’d have to ask him that question. I think he’d say I’m funny and I’ve dealt with a lot of bad things over the past few years but I still know how to have a good time.
If you are a book, what would be the title of the book and why?
That answer has changed a lot recently. I actually have been thinking about it. Someday I’d like to write my story so I guess I’ll find out then.
What’s next for Mystee in 2022?
In 2022, I’ll be playing some shows to promote “deep end” and then I’m back into the studio to do the next single or two. There’s a lot to be recorded!
What is your favorite healthy food?
Sushi. Is that healthy?
And your favorite cheat food?
How would you explain your fashion style?
It changes a lot. Right now I’m influenced a lot by skate park culture, but I also like to lean into the 70s vibes that seem to be everywhere right now.
What is your own definition of happiness?
Being proud of what you’ve accomplished and being surrounded by people who understand you. I guess feeling like you belong somewhere.
If you could meet someone living or dead, who would it be and why?
Probably John Lennon because I’d love to write some songs with him.
What would be the dream holiday, and who would you go with?
I would love to go to Norway with my best friends from all the different parts of my life. I’ve been trying to get there for years.
Best advice ever given?
That’s a tough one. Again I might have to say “do it scared”. It’s my whole thing right now.
Do you support any charity?
I donate to different ones depending on what’s happening in the world.
Where do you see yourself and your career in 5 years from now?
In 5 years, I’d like to have some touring under my belt and be writing songs for other artists more than I do now. I’d also like to teach songwriting at a university.
Favorite song? Why?
That is impossible. I have a new one every day. Sorry if that’s a boring answer.
What do you think of Social Media?
It’s a necessary evil. If I wasn’t a musician I wouldn’t have it.
Where we can follow you?
Instagram, Tiktok, Facebook: @mysteemusic
Quote: Do it scared
Movie: Bohemian Rhapsody
Tv Series: Bojack Horseman
Favorite Food: Sushi
Travel Destination: Norway
Sports Team: Denver Roller Derby