A new chapter opens for CCMA Rising Star and Songwriter of the Year, and NBC Songland winner, Madeline Merlo today with the release of her EP Slide.
Capturing growing pains, budding romance, and lessons learned while growing up, Merlo’s latest set of tracks showcases an evolution, a period of growth, and an enhanced sound and direction.
I caught up with Madeline to talk about the whirlwind that ensued after Songland, getting engaged and releasing music with her new record label.
Catching Up With Madeline Merlo About New Music And More
A whirlwind indeed … after a two year hiatus from releasing music, Madeline Merlo is back with fresh tunes, a record deal with BBR Music Group, an engagement, and a new house.
“Sometimes being a musician, it feels like it’s all encompassing. So this has felt great being able to enjoy these other things in my life,” says Madeline on getting engaged earlier this year, and moving into her new house with her fiancé.
Since the release of her 2020 singles, Madeline has been crafting thoughtful lyrics and leaning further into the country genre. Working with Zach Crowell (Sam Hunt, Dustin Lynch, Dierks Bentley) has been huge for Madeline.
“I am so proud of these songs and the creative growth in my artistry. Zach Crowell has been the key to finding my sound, and I’m so grateful for my label for giving us the trust and time to pursue that. I hope people can feel all the blood, sweat, and joy that went into this project.”
“Slide” Marks An Evolution Of Sound For Madeline Merlo
The EP’s title track “Slide” was co-written with Zach Crowell, Jerry Flowers and Sam Hunt. On selecting it as the title track, Madeline says, “It was the catalyst for the whole project. It was the first track Zach and I did together.” “Slide” symbolizes something for Madeline when it came to writing new music.
Releasing music through a new label put added pressure and she spent a lot of time working on thoughtful lyrics and melodies. She wrote and rewrote songs, pushing herself further with each track.
“It felt like a Madeline Merlo song. ‘Slide’ was the song that just clicked.”
The Influence Of TikTok
“Girl Where He Grew Up” blew up on TikTok earlier this year. Madeline still fields messages from fans asking when they’re going to get the full song released.
“TikTok is a wild animal, you don’t know what it’s going to do,” says Madeline.
What it did for this release however, was bump track four to make room for “Girl Where He Grew Up”.
“It’s important to listen to your fans. They wanted this song, and they’re who this is all for, so I had to put it out now,” says Madeline. She’s also grateful that she could go to her label and they were happy to make changes to an EP that was supposed to be finished.
Taking On The Next Chapter
Madeline has found herself in writing sessions with people she’s idolized and dreamed of learning from. Taking it all in is something she says she will never stop doing.
While there are some days she can’t believe where she’s landed, she says “It’s important to be where your feet are and I’m so grateful and humbled and excited to be here.”
When imposter syndrome strikes, she remembers she’s worked hard for over ten years. She’s dedicated the time to growth as an artist, songwriter and performer.
Madeline isn’t the only one excited for new music … we’re HUGE fans and are already loving the EP.
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Stream Madeline’s New EP
Country music lover with an unhealthy collection of concert t-shirts. Always looking for up and coming artists. Believer in music's ability to soothe the soul. Connect with me on Instagram and Twitter.