Getting to Know Margaret Glaspy

New York-based singer/songwriter Margaret Glaspy recently got confirmed as the opening act for The Lumineers’ “mega” January arena tour (also featuring Andrew Bird).  In addition, she’ll be playing the...

New York-based singer/songwriter Margaret Glaspy recently got confirmed as the opening act for The Lumineers’ “mega” January arena tour (also featuring Andrew Bird).  In addition, she’ll be playing the Iceland Airwaves Festival this November, followed by a bevy of European dates.  However, she does have a handful of upcoming US dates on the intimate side of things, including a stop this Thursday, October 13th, at Johnny Brenda’s, which features an opening set by Adrianne Lenker of Big Thief… and is allegedly nearly sold out… hint, hint…

Margaret Glaspy’s debut LP, Emotions and Math, came out this June on ATO Records, and has received praise from the likes of Pitchfork and New York Times.  The album boasts a punky, funky, and a slightly-bit poppy take on the singer/songwriter aesthetic, akin to ‘90s alt rock at its most sincere, in addition to more recent rockers like Girl in a Coma, and even the folk pop of mid-period Tegan and Sara.  Earlier this week Ms. Glaspy took some time to introduce herself to us.

Izzy Cihak: Your musical career is still relatively fresh.  What have been some of the highlights for you so far?

Margaret Glaspy: One of the biggest highlights is having a musical career period. I feel lucky to do what I’m doing and don’t take it for granted. If I’m lucky, I’ll be able to do it for the rest of my days!

Izzy: Have you had any particular favorite reactions to your music?

Margaret: When fans sing along, my heart fills up! It is such a special experience to watch and hear people sing along to your songs. Also, when kids dig the music, I get a pretty big thrill talking to any youngsters after a show.

Izzy: Is there anything you think is especially important for fans and potential fans to know about your process as a songwriter, or just your aim as an artist, or is it all in the music?

Margaret: Not really, it’s pretty much all in the music. I hope that they would gather all they need to know from the records and the live show itself.

Izzy: What would you consider to be your most significant influences, both musical and otherwise?

Margaret: Life and love are the biggest influences. Musically, I’m a huge Elliott Smith fan and have also recently gotten really into Tchaikovsky.

Izzy: Do you have any major influences that you suspect would surprise your fans?

Margaret: I have no gage of what surprises them, because I’m used to my own weirdness. I’m a huge Rage Against the Machine fan. Is that surprising?

Izzy: Your music video for “You And I” is so great! Do you have any particular favorite films or filmmakers?

Margaret: I love the movie The Sting and Out of Africa, I’m a huge fan of Chris Farley and Mike Meyers (particularly Wayne’s World); I’m a total documentary junkie and recently fell in love with Inventing David Geffen.

Izzy: You have a ton of upcoming dates and you’re also sharing stages with a lot of really cool musicians.  Are there any gigs you’re especially excited to play, or just cities you’re especially excited to visit?

Margaret: I’m really excited to play in Iceland, because it’s Iceland! I’m also excited to revisit London, it’s always a blast to play at home in New York, Los Angeles always has amazing crowds, and Philly is rad of course!

Izzy: What can we expect when you play Johnny Brenda’s?  I was excited to see you’re playing with Adrianne from Big Thief, who I’m also a big fan of.

Margaret: Adrianne is a good buddy of mine and I’m so excited to have her. Hearing her play solo is a special and stunning experience. That tour is going to be very special and you can expect to hear a few new songs that I’ve been working on for the next record, along with some special covers of Bjork and others.

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During the day Izzy Cihak teaches transgression, subversion, and revolution at Temple University. At night he haunts Philthy's best venues to cover worthwhile acts for Philthy Mag. Morrissey is everything to him and, in their own heads, all of his friends see themselves as Zooey Deschanel.