The concept of "Muscle and Skin" came to me as a metaphor for how we use our tools and cleverness and strength INSIDE vs on the OUTSIDE as we navigate the world around us; which ones we lean on at different times, and what others may perceive us as vs who we are underneath the surface.
Through my 15 years performing as a solo artist, I've gravitated away from fancy or outlandish outfits, fake lashes and makeup, and more and more toward the "UGLY" - embracing rawness, vulnerability, and pureness instead of what mainstream society embraces or champions as beautiful. In the genius words of Ani DiFranco - "I'm not a pretty girl. That's not what I do."
The stories in the songs on this album are all wrapped around the axle of this concept. They are confessional songs about heartbreak, industry compromise, sexual compromise, depression, hope, substance abuse, survival, and redemption.
They are about 15 years of growth and courage playing and recording music, flirting with "making it" in this industry, and building the armor necessary to survive.
My emotional and intellectual self has grown immensely through all the life experience I've crammed into my young life, and I want to take bolder strokes and strides as I express myself on the public stage as a songwriter and performer. I'm ready to handle, try anything. I'm ready to bolster the true self and give it the voice it deserves. And I've found my audience responds to honesty above all. As it happens, so do I. When I see an artist perform, I've realized I don't want clever lines or outrageous styles as much as I want the songs to MEAN SOMETHING to me. To translate a revelation, to express an emotion, to be unique and beautiful on their own merit. I don't want to be sold a polished package. I want the truth.
There is a lot of ground I have yet to cover. I have nearly two album's worth of songs ready to record after this release. They will be a different style musically, perhaps even a different "genre" entirely (pop songs with strong rock and hip hop influences), but they will have the same honesty pledge. I know in order to keep doing the work I do, I must keep the writing and channeling as honestly as when the ideas come into my mind and out of my hands and vocal chords.