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One on One with local musician Marianne Keith

Marianne Keith
Marianne Keith

You may know her from Thursday nights at the Piano Bar in Hollywood, but this California native is more than just another girl with a guitar. With her newest album, Cathartic,  about to drop, Marianne Keith has definitely got a lot going on. I recently had the chance to get a few words from Keith, here's what she had to say.

JL: How did you get started?

MK: I started singing in church when I was six years old, and fell in love with it. But it wasn't until much later that I started learning to play and writing music.

JL: Where do you draw your inspiration from for such meaningful lyrics?

MK: I find inspiration at times in the smallest things, but generally they come from something striking a chord with me emotionally.

JL: Yeah I can see that. I just love your lyrics, I can always find some way to relate to each one of your songs. Are they from personal experiences?

MK: Thank you :) Yes they are all from personal experiences on this record. I tend to write first person, and they always come out raw, straight from the heart.

JL: I think my favorite one is "Gotta Give In." What's the story behind that song?

MK: That is one of my favorites too. :) The story really is that, as a woman, choosing music specifically, and to pursue a career in general, I have taken the path less traveled. While most people are moving forward in the direction of marriage and starting a family, I, in some ways, felt like I was standing still. The guy I was dating at the time was pushing for a more serious commitment and the chorus really is his words. He was telling me if i didn't give in to someone, I would end up alone. And my answer was that a relationship was not what would complete me. In the bridge I say "we are born with a God-shaped hole and no man can fill it" and I believe that.

JL: That's so deep for a song with such a carefree melody, makes me love it even more. Do you write the music as well? Who are some of your favorite collaborators to work with when your developing a new song?

MK: Yes, I do write the music. Up to this point I actually have done all my songwriting alone. I develop and complete the song on the guitar or the piano and then I come into the studio and my producers, Bruce Witkin and Ryan Dorn and I start to build around that, adding parts and choosing tones and vibes.

JL: What would you say is your biggest inspiration for what you do? The driving force behind your music?

MK: I have a passion for music, for the art of it and I believe it is one of the most powerful abstract things on this earth. I love creating it and it really is a part of my soul. I don't know who I am without my songs. I also have a passion for people and to reach them and connect with them. And I have a passion for God and I believe this is a gift He gave me to share.

JL: What are your goals as a musician? Your vision?

MK: I want to take this as far as I possibly can. Since I was a little girl I dreamed of performing for thousands of people and I hope to see that dream realized. But if I even make one person feel something, or realize something, or be able to express something they wouldn't have otherwise, I will be successful.

JL: If your music is a form of creative expression, what's your message to the world? What's the truth behind your songs?

MK: The truth behind my songs is that life is not ever one-dimensional. Sometimes it is deeply sad, difficult, carefree or just plain bizarre. But regardless of that truth, there is hope, in God and in love.

JL: Some very wise words from such a young musician. Thanks so much for your time! 

For more information on Marianne Keith visit her at or follow her @MarianneKeith


  • LBJ 5 years ago

    Thank you for this MK interview! I work with her and she is amazing...big ups to Examiner for the feature. For any LA peeps who're interested, Marianne plays every Thursday at Piano Bar (9:30 set time), which is an amaaaazing place in Hollywood: sort of divey, no pretense, just a good place for cheap drinks and good music. Hopefully I'll see you there!

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