Maggie Chapman is a 17-year-old from Florida that loves reading classic literature and wearing red lipstick. You would think she's like any other teenager but what differentiates her from other high school girls is that she's already pursuing her music career!
She's been praised as one of the best songwriters to ever sign with Creative Nation and we can see why: Maggie's lyrical brilliance shines through songs such as Unbreak, Pickin Petals or Golden Girl.
The singer-songwriter will release her debut LP Vignette on September 16th. Meanwhile, Teen Diaries had the pleasure to chat with her about music, makeup and much more. Check it out below!
When did you start making music?
Growing up, my dad videotaped EVERYTHING. There’s this one family video where I was about eighteen-months-old, in a car seat jammed in between my two older brothers; I was singing at the top of my lungs and my mom goes, “Isn’t it crazy, Maggie’s friends are all saying their first words, but she makes up all these little songs.”
What led to your decision to sign with Creative Nation Music?
I wrote with Luke Laird when I was thirteen. I remember sitting there in awe of the fact that someone that talented and successful could be so down-to-earth and humble. About six months later, I met Beth Laird and she started helping me schedule things when I came to town. We had this instantaneous connection and from the beginning, we’ve had the same vision for who I am as an artist and as a songwriter. Creative Nation is a family of ridiculously gifted, amazing people and I’m humbled to be a part of it.
How would you define your music?
I love songs that tell stories. I am a huge literature fan and I love clever wordplay. My goal has always been to write songs that are relatable but unconventional. I’m a huge fan of Popular music, past and present and I especially gravitate towards and tend to write music where a real, honest story meets a catchy melody.
What comes first for you -- lyrics or music?
Honestly, it’s different with every song! Sometimes it’s a song title, sometimes it’s a melody, but mostly, when I’m going through something and I’m like, “Ugh, I wish there was a song about this!” I see it as a challenge to say something that hasn’t been said before, so that someone out there who has gone through something similar can know they’re not alone in what they’re feeling.
What instruments do you play?
I play piano by ear and guitar. I took drum lessons for like six months in the seventh grade, but I don’t really tell anybody that.
Who are your musical influences?
I’ve been in a massive Fleetwood Mac phase for the past five years. I’m beginning to think it’s no longer a phase, but a part of who I am. Like people who know me would say, “Maggie has brown hair and loves Fleetwood Mac.” I also am majorly influenced by Carole King, Tom Petty and Jackson Browne.
How do you juggle being a student with your musical career?
For a while, I traveled back and forth from Florida and juggling that with school was a little crazy! I’m a dork though and I love learning, so I kept my grades up in the midst of the chaos. I started homeschooling halfway through ninth grade and I graduated high school a year and a half early so I could focus on my music completely while still having the option of going to college.
Do you have any hobbies besides music?
I love to read, I really enjoy running, and I have a little bit of a baking addiction! I think it’s a giving addiction too... I make a mean banana bread, I’ve been told. There’s something so fulfilling about the smile on people’s faces when you hand them something you put your hard work, time and effort into. It’s similar to the feeling of performing and seeing people respond to your music. It’s magic.
Who do you admire the most in the music industry?
I really admire Carole King. My grandparents took me to see the Broadway show, “Beautiful”, and it made me respect her in a whole new way. She was also highly determined and started her career at a very young age. She’s one of the most amazing songwriters of our time and I have always looked up to her.
What's your favorite song?
THIS IS THE MOST DIFFICULT QUESTION EVER. At the moment, I’m slightly obsessed with “All About That Bass” by my dear friend and co-writer, Meghan Trainor! It’s that positive body-image song that all of us girls of the photoshop, filtered generation needed to hear. I just love it and her so much!
Who would be your dream music collaboration, dead or alive?
Stevie Nicks. She’s my songwriting, vocal and style icon. Not to mention, I’m pretty sure she would be the coolest person on the planet.
How would you define your style?
I’d have to say it’s classic with an edge. I’m curvy, so I love form-fitting, Marilyn Monroe-esque clothing, but with a modern twist!
What's your favorite fashion item in your closet?
I love thrift shopping and I recently found this vintage, maroon and gold, letterman jacket with a big “C” embroidered on it! It’s pretty awesome.
What's your must-have beauty product?
Chanel “Ever Red” lipstain! I always like to have a bold lip and that stuff never comes off. I drink coffee all day long and it always looks like I’ve just reapplied. It’s the greatest invention.
What are your makeup essentials?
Cat-eyes, filled in brows and some sort of lip color are my go-tos! I use Lancome liquid liner, Anastasia Beverly Hills brunette brow-powder and Chanel lip stains religiously!
Who is your celebrity crush?
James Dean. They just don’t get any dreamier than him in “Rebel Without A Cause.”
What would be your ideal date?
I’ve always wanted to go to a drive-in movie! I think I might have had a chance at being a normal teenager if I had been a teen in the 1950’s.
What advice would you give to young musicians who want to make it to the industry?
Never ever forget why you started making music. It’s easy to get jaded or to be focused on the wrong things in the entertainment industry, but I honestly believe that if your heart is in the right place, people will sense that in the music you make.
What's up next for you?
My debut album, Vignette, is about to come out, which feels absolutely crazy! I just filmed my very first music video and in the midst of all of the album-release-prep, I’ve been writing more than ever. I’m beyond excited about what is to come!
Check out the song "Golden Girl", a song inspired by the love story of Zelda and F. Scott Fitzgerald.
If you can't wait to listen to more songs, don't worry, we've got you covered! You can hear Maggie's EP on iTunes.