'Stranger Things' Maya Hawke on making 'Moss,' and taking inspiration from Taylor Swift's 'folklore'

The singer's quest to be 'smooth but not soft'
Maya Hawke
Photo credit Todd Owyoung/Getty Images
By , Audacy

On the latest episode of Kyle Meredith With… Maya Hawke joins Kyle Meredith to talk all about Moss, her upcoming sophomore album, which finds her taking inspiration from Taylor Swift.

LISTEN NOW: Kyle Meredith With… Maya Hawke on Being Inspired by Taylor Swift's Folklore, Finding Confidence, and Stranger Things

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Kyle Meredith With...
Maya Hawke on Being Inspired by Taylor Swift's Folklore, Finding Confidence, and Stranger Things
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All you have to do is listen, and you’ll know that there’s no denying Maya Hawke has a special sound all her own. Curious about the lyrical and artistic process of her latest project Moss, Kyle inquired where she wanted the sound of this album to go.

“So I guess… when we recorded the record we basically didn’t have a drummer.” Maya revealed, adding that her sound engineer did add some drums to a few tracks. But that overall, “it was really just Christian, Will, Ben and I, and we kind of wanted it to have… a pulse, not a beat.”

With additional goals of having the album be cohesive, Maya and her team stuck to a rule of three. Pledging that if they use a technique once, it had to be used two more times through the album.

Another sound aspiration Maya hoped for on Moss was for it to be “smooth but not soft.” Looking to Taylor Swift’s folklore, as a main point of inspiration, and main reason she wanted, and got to work with Jonathan Low, who mixed Taylor’s album.

“This ability to have sound smooth, like the idea that you could both run to it, and fall asleep to it on an airplane is like how I feel about folklore,” Prefacing her next thoughts saying, she doesn’t “necessarily think that we achieved it,” but regardless, that was the goal.

For Maya working on Moss was also discovering her own confidence, curiosity, and rebellion. As well as shaking off her old self within the lyrics.

Hawke and Meredith also discussed the symbolism in the artwork about creating multiple versions of herself, as well as Maya’s latest single, ”Thérèse,” which puts a spotlight on how the male gaze affects growing up as a young woman.

At another point in the conversation Hawke also drew parallels between her real self and Robin Buckley, the character she portrays on Stranger Things, saying the Robin "is like a cartoon version of me,” noting that “she would like Phoebe Bridgers."

For all that and more listen to the entire podcast episode above.

Kyle Meredith With... is an interview series in which WFPK's Kyle Meredith speaks to a wide breadth of musicians. Meredith digs deep into the artist's work to find out how the music is made and where their journey is going, from legendary artists like Robert Plant, Paul McCartney, U2, and Bryan Ferry, to the newer class of The National, St. Vincent, Arctic Monkeys, Haim, and Father John Misty.

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