With an authentic touch, and a purity to her music, Megan Core is the best of all of us. She’s just a girl, standing in front of an audience, asking them to relate to her. At the end of the day, isn’t that what it’s all about?
On her new single ‘Twenty Something’, Megan agrees. She wrote the track, out today, for her friends, but it became so much more than that.
“I wrote it as my experience, and for my friends, and my mates and their experiences that I could see happening around me. But then when I started playing it at gigs, people were like, ‘Oh my God, that is so relatable. You just described my life right now.’”
That experience was being at a crossroads after finishing university in Newcastle. “All of my friends and I were either applying for grad jobs and full time work or planning travel, thinking, ‘Are we going to stay here in Newcastle or are we going to move away?’ Most of my friends were getting into new relationships and more serious things now that they’re a little older. I was capturing that time in our lives, where it was turbulent and anxiety-driven and we didn’t know what was going to happen.”
You wouldn’t be able to tell, but Megan only started writing songs two years ago, when she was around 21. Coming from a musical family, it put her on a trajectory to start playing shows and eventually share what she had created, despite the fact that she studied something else entirely. “It’s like this weird balance”, she laughs, “between my science brain and my creative brain.”
“At first I thought because I was the musician, and I was there to perform, I had to be really polite to everyone all the time and really friendly…”
“I’m more productive when I’m really busy”, she adds. “When I only have a small window to play music, that’s when I am writing more and I guess inventing more and really appreciating it.”
Everything that Megan does is personal to her, down to asking her sister to create the art for her new single. She articulates the process of writing her songs as like writing diary entries. “That usually works out to be a complete reflection of my life at a time”, she points out. It makes her songs capsules of memories that are important to her, sometimes dreamy and other times, darker. A song waiting to be recorded from her catalogue is ‘Call It Out’, which is about her experience as a young girl playing gigs on her own.
“I was just keen to get as much experience possible, so I was doing like a lot of pubs or clubs or whatever. I would do all these weekends and often nights. It’s in an environment where there’s drinking, and there are these groups of guys and groups of men out and about. At first I thought because I was the musician, and I was there to perform, I had to be really polite to everyone all the time and really friendly…but I got hassled back a lot more than I was expecting.
“Some nights, I would come home really angry and be like, that person said something or they’re really hassling me and I know it was because I’m a young girl and I was there by myself, and if I was in a group, I’m sure this happens to young guys by themselves as well. I’m not going to be passive, but I just felt like it was always by older men and it just wouldn’t have happened if I was a guy and I used to come home so angry some nights and so sick of it. And I think learning through that, that I didn’t have to be timid and passive about it, I got really strong and like, I can’t fix the problem, but I can really stand up for myself and stand up for other people and be assertive to that person and show them that that’s not how you treat someone.”
It’s an important conversation to continue having, especially given the global discussion happening around equality right now. And at its very core, it comes down to having empathy for our fellow human beings. Megan shares that mission with us, memorialising her experiences for others to relate to. With her new single now out in the world and more on the way, she’s continuing to use universal messages in her music to show that we really are all in this together.
Listen to Megan’s new single below.
Photo credit: Andrew Brassington