Meredith Moon unveils new album, Constellations (Interview)

Meredith Moon

Meredith Moon’s Constellations is set to be released on March 31, 2023

True North Records today announced the signing of Meredith Moon and the forthcoming release of her new album, Constellations, a blisteringly honest but astonishing body of work that easily puts her neatly in the footsteps of her father, Gordon Lightfoot. Constellations is set to be released on March 31st, 2023.

For the past decade, Meredith Moon introduced herself simply as “a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter,” wowing audiences around the world with her clawhammer banjo and original songs. She didn’t mention that her father is Gordon Lightfoot; she first wanted to prove herself on her own terms. Which she did: one gig at a time, hitchhiking around North America, riding the rails, and making her own connections in DIY spaces and online forums. Now her second album, Constellations, has landed her a global record deal—and she’s ready for her close-up.

Constellations comprises ten songs that showcase Meredith’s unique voice and captivating lyrics, wrapped in a raw neo-traditional folk sound with traditional Appalachian step-rhythms and banjo.

But Meredith Moon isn’t someone living in the past. She’s a young woman. She taught herself to play banjo when she was 21 by watching YouTube videos. Then she hit the road playing solo alongside a folk-punk band, tapping into a DIY network that enabled her to book her own tours: across North America, Central America, and western Europe, including Croatia and the Czech Republic — many places that don’t often see a young female singer-songwriter playing Appalachian-style banjo. Bars, art spaces, house shows — it didn’t matter to Moon:

“I booked everything through the traveling punks and the old-time scene—which are honestly quite similar.”

She only performed publicly with her father for the first time in 2022, opening some Canadian dates for the songwriting legend.

“He didn’t introduce me as his daughter. He completely understands and respects why I’d want that. He’d just say, ‘Give it up for Meredith Moon.’ That was really nice.”

So, take the man’s advice and put your hands together and give it up: follow Constellations until you find Meredith Moon. On her own merits.

Meredith Moon will be performing an album release concert in Toronto at the Rivoli on March 31, 2023.

Watch the video for the title track, “Constellations,” below and learn more about Meredith Moon via her socials.

Care to introduce yourself?

Hi, I’m Meredith!

Tell us about the process of writing ” Constellations.”

Constellations was written over the course of probably six or so years – a couple of the earliest songs were written in 2016, title track included, while another two of the songs were written in 2021. A few of them were finished just days before the final recording sessions in March of 2022.

I had originally intended for it to have been released in May of 2020 – but alas, the world changed quite a bit there for some time! I consider the wait, now in retrospect, a good thing for the album, as I was able to change some things and write a couple more songs for it by the time of its release.

The album wasn’t meant to be about stars or space or about any of those things – that was unintentional. It wasn’t until I listened back to it for the first time that I realized almost every song had a reference to stars in some way, so going with the ‘stars/space’ theme became easy.

The interesting thing that I’ve noticed is that none of the songs have a connecting story – they’re all about completely different circumstances and different people who have passed through my life these past few years. The only thing making the album a unit is the mention of stars – so I feel the title is appropriate.

What’s it like being a musician in Toronto?

It’s a gift to be a musician in Toronto! I’ve resided in many different places in this country – and never have I found a better folk scene. However, it’s not just folk – it’s jazz, it’s old-time, it’s bluegrass, it’s all the things I personally love. You can find a show or a player’s session every night of the week without looking too far. Toronto has done a fantastic job at maintaining its musical diversity, accessibility, and saturation throughout the years. I know so many incredible musicians who gig 3 or 4 nights a week in different bands, at different clubs, and in different genres. I have a great deal of respect for the Toronto old-time (of all genres) music community.

Who was the first Canadian artist to blow you away?

I would have to say, Joni. I used to listen to Joni Mitchell constantly when I was 15 and 16, painting from midnight until dawn and absorbing her sound deep in my soul. I didn’t know how to really sing until I waited for the house to be empty, and I’d belt out tunes like ‘Willy’ and ‘My Old Man’ and see what I could do with my voice. I got a McSpadden Appalachian dulcimer because of her, and thanks to the dulcimer, I was led enthusiastically down the rabbit hole of old-time and bluegrass music and began writing my own songs. I think I have her to thank for a lot of it.

You’ve been making music for a while now. What’s one piece of advice you can offer to those starting out?

Don’t listen to mean people – I tend to believe they are just acting on the insecurity of their own music not becoming what they’d hoped it might have when they were in your place, but do take the criticism of those who show you kindness and try to be grateful that they care enough to do so. Take opportunities, limit your “exposure” gigs to almost none – know your worth! Play as many open mics as you can get in on as many jam circles as you can, and meet as many people as you can handle! Those moments alone are important, though, too. Try to keep your music personal and remember that you’re doing this for yourself and your own emotional regulation. At the end of the day, whatever else happens, happens.

Connect with Meredith Moon:

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