Matt Mays Biography
Winner of Galaxie’s Rising Star Award at NXNE 2003, twenty-four-year-old singer-songwriter, guitarist and avid surfer Matt Mays steps into the limelight with the independent release of his debut solo album, aptly self-titled.
The album features 10 all-original tracks and includes guest musician Bob Egan of Wilco/Blue Rodeo fame. A recent cover feature in Halifax’s The Coast (January 2003) describes it as a “sweet affair”, “clearly crafted” with “catchy choruses...reminiscent of a younger, edgier Blue Rodeo, mixed with the laid back messiness of Tonight’s the Night-era Neil Young.” The Halifax Daily News writes “...it’s one of the best debut albums to come out of the East in years.”
“The CD offers a wide variety of musical styles, genres and influences”, says Matt, who started writing songs at the early age of 15. “The key for me is not to live a linear lifestyle…my writing is mostly inspired by spontaneity and emotional experiences.”
As a former member of The Guthries, Matt toured Canada, coast to coast, and Great Britain. His songwriting ability grabbed the attention of Country Music Television (CMT), whose production team traveled to Nova Scotia in summer 2002 to film a half hour music spotlight on The Guthries, and to make a video for Matt’s song Season to Leave, later put into rotation on CMT. This song was also chosen by the British music magazine UNCUT, to be included on its compilation CD, Songs of the New West - The Best of Americana 2000, featuring music by Emmylou Harris and Gram Parsons.
An amicable parting of ways sparked Matt’s solo career. Since the quiet release of his solo album, he pieced together the four-piece El Torpedo. This crowd-pleasing, charismatic alt country-rock band features Jarrett Murphy on guitar; Brad Conrad on organ and pedal steel; Tim Baker on drums, and Andy Patil on bass. “Matt Mays and El Torpedo combine solid playing with dense narratives and Matt’s sad/bad boy singing style. “He conjures up a young Tom Petty”, writes Exclaim.
The group recently shot their first video for “Downtown” soon to be released to CMT and MuchMoreMusic.
Delighting both long-time and new-found fans, Matt Mays and El Torpedo have been performing over recent months with such artists as Sam Roberts, Billy Bragg, The Skydiggers, Nathan Wiley, Kathleen Edwards and The Rheostatics.
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