Not that you wouldn't already be impressed by the styling and quality of images below, but for some context, we asked on-the-rise musician MAAD if she would be interested in producing a quick at-home photo shoot to accompany her interview. She excitedly agreed, and the rest is history. What we expected was an assortment of creatively posed looks taken on an iPhone, maybe a friend's camera, but what we got was a four-look, high-quality, full-blown photo shoot that was all executed at MAAD's home with the help of just one close friend. Now that you've been filled in on how impressed we are with the photos below, it's time for me to brag even further about this artist.
In her short time being a solo artist, singer and songwriter MAAD has released two EPs: Lé Funk in 2017 and Technicolor in 2018. The genre of her music is difficult to put in a box but has the familiar sound of R&B, hip-hop, and disco. This week, MAAD released her latest EP, Eventually Pt.1, and chatted with us about the meaning behind the title, what she wants her fans to get from the record, and of course, her personal style. Fashion is something that has been rooted in MAAD's life since her childhood and has clearly played a role in how she presents herself as an artist and we are so lucky to have received an exclusive look at that side of her here.
Ahead, read our interview with MAAD and prepare to be impressed by the at-home shoot she pulled off just for us.
"This pink blazer is one of my favorites. I love how vibrant and oversized it is. Plus, I love a strong shoulder on blazers. Itʼs a win-win."
Your EP, Eventually Pt. 1, was released this week. What do you want your fans and new listeners to know about this record?
I'm so excited it's out. This record is about the journey and rejoicing the importance of self-love. I really wanted to take a different approach with this release and be fully transparent with myself.
What is the significance of the EP title, Eventually?
I love the title Eventually because it feels positive and optimistic. It's saying no matter how hard the road is ahead or how difficult the obstacle, we'll still get to our destination.
Is there one track that is particularly meaningful to you?
That's a hard one! I guess it would be biased for me to say all of them right? If I had to choose one, I'd say "ILM." It's the self-love anthem and a full-on vibe, plus the message behind it is powerful. Like RuPaul says, "If you can't love yourself, how in the hell can you love somebody else?" That's a word right there.
Self-love is one of the most radical things you can do for yourself. I hope the takeaway from this song is that it's okay to put yourself first. I love looking out for others, but sometimes I forget to take "me" time.
"This is my new favorite sweaterdress. I want to wear it all the time! It was a gift from Philosophy and I adore it. I clearly have a thing for statement shoulders."
Do you have a plan for when Pt. 2 will drop?
For sure! Ideally would love to have it out before the year is out.
This record is a major career accomplishment. What other career goals do you have on the horizon?
This would be my third project out and I'm excited to share a more personal side of myself. I was initially concerned to drop new music during this time, but people need an escape and I want to give that to them.
In regard to career goals, once venues open back up, I'd like to tour this and my previous bodies of work. Unfortunately, none of us are sure when shows will start up again, but it's been a great time for me to dig deep into my craft and discover new sides of myself and voice. I'm also grateful to have some campaigns and editorials coming out soon.
I'm curious how the moniker MAAD came about. Is there a backstory?
My mother would always call me "mademoiselle," and Maad became the nickname.
"My blue fuzzy sweater. It reminds me of the '90s and gives me Clueless vibes. Itʼs super cute with a miniskirt too."
Fashion is clearly a major part of your life. Tell us about your personal style and your journey with fashion over the years.
It's such a huge part! There's something so special about being able to showcase a mood through clothing. My mom is a stylist and I've learned so much from her throughout the years that I will hold on to forever. My father is also extremely dapper, so I've been inspired by him as well. So inspired that I sometimes “borrow” his pieces.
My journey with fashion has always been fun. I can proudly say that Iʼve definitely had some cringe-worthy moments, but you need those moments to be like "That's not it, girl."
As the years have gone on, I'm very choosy with my selections. I try to pick pieces that I can hold onto for some time. I will say that's a major difference from my past to now. I love a good-quality piece.
Your mom was a stylist and your dad a musician. How much did their careers influence and impact where you are today?
They've been so influential through the process—whether that's sharing advice, giving me support, or lending an ear. They've always believed there was something special about my talents and drive. I was always allowed to express myself creatively, and Iʼm grateful for that.
"I love, love, love, this two-piece. The embroidery on it is everything."
Do you have any style icons that you look up to for inspiration?
I love Diana Ross, Cher, Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City, and '90s supermodels. I live for the theatrics and they give me just that.
Any favorite brands at the moment?
Pyer Moss, Brother Vellies, Christopher John Rogers, Philosophy, and Area to name a few.
Do you have any advice for young artists trying to break into the music industry? Any advice you wish you would have received when you were first starting out?
Stay focused! You're going to have naysayers, but you have to believe in yourself immensely first. Especially with social media playing a part—there are a lot of opinions out there and you have to be able to brush it off. I'll also suggest knowing the business. Do your research so you can know the ins and outs. Having talent is a beautiful thing, but knowing the business will help you thrive.