Los Angeles-based artist, McClenney is a man of many hats! As a producer, songwriter, director, and photographer – it’s clear to see just why people adore him so much. With the release of his latest single, “Give Me Time” we had to speak with him about the inspiration behind the intimate visuals and head-bobbing beat! In our exclusive interview with McClenney, he spoke to us about all things music, the quarantine, and much more!
Tell us about “Give Me Time.”
It’s all about patience and allowing space for things. We’re in a fast-paced world. To me the meaningful things need time to blossom and flourish. It could be a relationship, personal growth, goals, anything really. When I first started it, I had this strong feeling to explore some grittier guitar tones than I had before. I’ve always loved so much music with distorted guitar tones. When I first picked up the guitar, “alternative” bands like Foo Fighters, Chili Peppers, Incubus, and Rage Against the Machine were some of my biggest inspirations. Metallica even at times. That’s sort of a side of me people don’t know I’m passionate about. Give me Time doesn’t necessarily sound like those bands, but my love for those sounds and textures made their way into the song. It was freeing to be honest, as an artist that some may know for Intimate keyboards and romantic sounds. It wasn’t forced at all. This is the music I’ve always been working towards making, it’s really an extension of my identity and I’ve just started to more obviously blend those Alternative influences in to my work. Artistically I always shoot to dictate the narrative but be respectful of what my supporters love about what I do. It’s a balance that keeps both of us happy and evolving.
What inspired visuals for “Give Me Time”?
The sounds and sonic textures were the biggest inspiration, but most importantly, limitations. I wanted to craft a video that was 100% matched the vibe of the song without saying too much. Giving myself a specific limitation actually made conceptualizing it very clear. Give me time felt like it needed a performance video, but one that had the viewer sitting with me as I live through the song. A 1 shot idea felt perfect for it.
How would you describe being a creative during the time of the quarantine?
It’s both exciting and stressful. Exciting because it’s a new challenge to create and think in ways we’ve never had to before. Stressful for that very reason. Things are different than they were a year ago. But in some ways, they’re not, because Quarantine just highlighted how important it is to share your work with people and let them enjoy it too. Health wise taking care of myself has been a huge priority for me this year. Even since before we knew there would be a pandemic. Physically, from a nutrition POV, and mentally from a “state of mind” POV. Both mental and physical health are key to not just surviving but actually excelling in times like these. Whatever I put in my body affects me in my ability to be the best me. Whether that’s food, ideas, or information, everything. I’m grateful to be tuned into that more than ever now.
What are you currently working on and what can we expect next?
I’m always creating and brainstorming. There are McClenney songs I’m very excited about, and music I’ve produced for other artists I’m excited about. I don’t want to name names, but there’s a new era ahead and I’m really happy to share what that looks like in 2021.
All images by Weichao Kong