Annie Mack performs in The Current studio

Annie Mack in The Current studio
Annie Mack in The Current studio (Nate Ryan/MPR)
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Annie Mack plays music and talks with Andrea Swensson
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| 00:22:45
  • Annie Mack plays music and talks with Andrea Swensson 22:45
  • Annie Mack - Love 04:16
  • Annie Mack - Closer 04:06
  • Annie Mack - Tell it Like it Is 04:21

In advance of her upcoming EP release, Tell it Like it Is, Annie Mack joined Andrea Swensson in The Current's studio with her band to play a few songs off the EP and talk about some of the themes and influences behind her music.

Currently based in Rochester with roots in Minneapolis, Annie Mack began her musical career fairly recently. "After my mother passed away, the thing that really stood out to me was to do something that you like before you leave this life." So that's just what she did. Inspired by her mother's love of music, she began singing in remembrance of her, but never intended to be in the place she is now, pursuing music professionally.

Growing up in the 80s in the musically rich North Minneapolis, she's always had a passion for music. "I think it was just by environment, music was such a big part of my youth - just the soundtrack really. I think about The Gap Band, of course, Prince, all the funk and the soul [. . .]" Mack says. She markets herself as a blues artist, but in listening to any handful of her songs, the melting of many more genres can be heard.

Mack's soulful voice still carries the same depth in all her songs, but hearing "Closer" just after "Love," a shift from a bluesy, rock sound to something closer to a folk song is immediately apparent, and she says that sometimes the lyrics or the ideas for a song don't always fit into a traditional blues song which results in an evolving sound. In tracks like "Closer," her voice stands out in the quieter moments, just as it does in the rollicking choruses of songs more upbeat.

In preparation for her EP release show at Aster Cafe on March 9th, Mack talked a bit about the story behind the title track, "Tell it Like it Is," a song that addresses issues of addiction head-on. She wrote it out of support and respect for friends of hers who have gone through the battle of addiction and says that, "it's about finding strength in a very humble place, and starting over, and being secure in understanding that in order to achieve sobriety and stay there, this is where you have to be."

Songs Performed


"Love"
"Closer"
"Tell it Like it Is"

Hosted by Andrea Swensson
Produced by Jesse Wiza
Engineered by Michael DeMark
Visuals by Nate Ryan
Web feature written by Maia Jacobson
Web feature produced by Hanna Bubser

Resources

Annie Mack - official site

8 Photos

  • Annie Mack in The Current studio
    Annie Mack in The Current studio (Nate Ryan/MPR)
  • Annie Mack in The Current studio
    Annie Mack in The Current studio (Nate Ryan/MPR)
  • Annie Mack and Pete Sands perform
    Annie Mack and Pete Sands perform (Nate Ryan/MPR)
  • Pete Sands plays with Annie Mack
    Pete Sands plays with Annie Mack (Nate Ryan/MPR)
  • Annie Mack sings with Pete Sands on keys
    Annie Mack sings with Pete Sands on keys (Nate Ryan/MPR)
  • Jon Herchert on guitar and Billy Thommes on drums
    Jon Herchert on guitar and Billy Thommes on drums (Nate Ryan/MPR)
  • Jon Herchert performs with Annie Mack
    Jon Herchert performs with Annie Mack (Nate Ryan/MPR)
  • Jon Herchert performs with Annie Mack
    Jon Herchert performs with Annie Mack (Nate Ryan/MPR)