Drew Mac spills how hard it is to write about someone you used to love
You might recognize him from his role on reality TV shows like Rich Kids of Beverly Hills or EJNYC. But what Drew Mac has to offer today is layers deeper, he’s here to share news about his upcoming solo EP and wants his fans to get to know him a little better.
And it’s all about breakups. Drew walks us through what it’s like to fall in and out of love, and how he turns all of his experiences into music.
What are you here to tell us about today?
Firstly, thank you for taking the time to speak to me! I am excited to share that I am close to finishing my debut solo EP that I’ve been working hard on for the past two years. This EP is a raw reflection of the ups and downs in my life over the past couple years, and is inspired by deep love, heartbreak and addiction. Hopefully people can relate to my story because I’m conveying very real life experiences.
How’d you get into music?
I grew up surrounded by music. My parents were in a rock band and you could find a guitar in almost any room in the house. There was always music playing. My creativity was always supported and encouraged. I made my own movies, put on performances for my family, and wrote/recorded songs on my computer.
At age 10, I started training as a competitive dancer in modern, hip hop, ballet, jazz, and contemporary, which I fell in love with and consumed most of my free time until I graduated high school.
Who’s been the biggest inspiration to you during this process?
I grew up in the late 90’s and early 2000’s with Britney and boy bands and that era has been a big inspiration to me for my music, sonically and visually.
My musical inspirations span from Backstreet Boys and NSYNC, to David Bowie, Robyn, and Kanye West. I also take inspiration from all different aspects of my life-love, fashion, pop culture, and film.
Have there been any times when you doubted or had second thoughts about this project? How’d you get past that?
In general I’ve always known that being an artist and performer is what I should be doing with my life, but sometimes specifically with this project, I go through phases of loving and hating songs I’ve written and it’s good to just sit on it and keep working until I’m satisfied. I’m kind of a perfectionist, which can be a blessing and a curse.
What was your favorite outfit as a kid and what does it say about who you are now?
Growing up I would always put on performances for my family. A staple of mine was a blue sequined Tara Lipinski figure skating costume, and I would “skate” around the marble floors of my parents home and put on a show. It was everything.
If you rubbed against a lamp in a thrift shop and a genie popped out, what would your three wishes be?
Love, good health, and continued artistic inspiration.
If someone walked in on you home alone, without you expecting them, what embarrassing act would they catch you in?
If someone walked in on me home alone, I would either be belting and dancing like a 13-year-old girl, or watching Desperate Housewives.
Photo by Dane Kyle Vaughan
Which Miley Cyrus song describes you the most and why?
Whenever her song “23” comes on when I’m out with my friends, it gets me so turnt up.
Your song “Over” that you released this year is the song I sing in the shower. What is it like putting yourself on the line and releasing raw feelings into a song like that?
Songwriting is like therapy for me. If I go through something I need to write how I feel and it helps me process my emotions. I was going through a tough breakup when I wrote “Over.” I wanted it to express my broken heart but not have it be a super depressing song. It was a hard one to perform in the studio because the feelings were so real and raw.
I didn’t realize how nerve racking it would be to release such a personally emotional record and just allow my feelings to public. However, the experience I’ve gained can be super liberating. I believe my music should allow people to dance, no matter if its a sad or happy song.
You’re working a lot with “EXES” on your music, what do you like about them and what level do they add to what you’re trying to achieve in the songs?
I met Allie and Mike (EXES) in college when I first moved to LA, before they formed EXES. I fell in love with Allie’s voice from the beginning. When I started my solo career I knew I needed to collaborate on a song with them. Allie’s voice and personality mixed with the production and creativity of Mike take our songs to another level and I think the combination sounds so organic and cool.
Do you have any break up advice for us?
Attitude is everything. Now is not the time to isolate yourself. My advice is to be social and put yourself out there and be around positive influences. Focus on the benefits of your independence and put energy into positive things even if it is something like a fresh look, new outfit or the gym. Keep yourself busy!
I feel like your music has a sad twist to it, how have the experiences you’ve gone through shape you as an artist?
I write about real life experiences in my life. Sad situations poor out of me more freely lyrically than happier situations. Writing songs help me process my emotions. I’m in such a strong and happy place right now and write daily, which shapes me as an artist and by telling my story in all different ways.
Were you ever afraid to come out and be your true self? If so how did you overcome that?
I was definitely afraid to come out growing up. I am blessed because my family is very accepting and has gay friends, however, the community is more conservative and I worried about changing their perception of me and losing friends.
I moved to Los Angeles when I was 18 for college and felt free to speak about that side of myself. I shortly afterwards came out to my friends and family in Kansas. It’s strange because you worry for so long about what people will say or think yet sometimes your loved ones are not surprised and accept you anyway.
Photography by Grayson Wilder @graysonwilder