(May 4, 2018) – With her captivating multi-octave voice and persuasive cross-cultural message, vocalist and songwriter Mayssa Karaa defines a new era of musical inclusion. Her self-penned songs tell of a journey connecting her origins in the ancient land of Lebanon to her adopted home of Los Angeles, California. She will release her full-length English solo debut album later this year, which is being produced by Grammy® Award-winner Richard Jacques.
In the meantime, “Broken Lines” from Simple Cure can be heard as part of the latest installment of the world’s best-selling, multiple-artist, multi-Platinum compilation series, “NOW That’s What I Call Music!”. Now That’s What I Call Music! 66, which was released today via a partnership between Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment. In addition to current hits by Maroon 5, Justin Timberlake featuring Chris Stapleton, Dua Lipa, Meghan Trainor and many others, NOW 66 includes five free up-and-coming “NOW Presents What’s Next” New Music Preview bonus tracks including “Broken Lines”, as well as new songs from Calum Scott feat. Leona Lewis, Arlissa featuring Jonas Blue, Ruel, and Walkney. Previewing tomorrow’s biggest hits, “NOW Presents What’s Next” has introduced major developing artists to NOW’s enthusiastic, highly engaged audience, including Walk The Moon, Hot Chelle Rae, Hunter Hayes, Capitol Cities, A Great Big World, and Shawn Mendes, among others.
As Mayssa explains the meaning of “Broken Lines”, “Basically, since we were kids, we are told who we are, what to do, what to become, who to love and who to hate. As we get older, we learn to evolve into our true selves, live more in the moment, and not think about those restrictions. In the song, this girl is dragging her lover and convincing him to take a leap of faith, to leave everything behind and explore the world while seeing things JUST the way they are. ‘As we are, we’re beautiful, let’s go! Leave behind what you know’ (you being institutionalized, your worries, your assumptions) and come join me in a world where life is fun, where we feel free, where we can enjoy the moment! Let’s Go!”
Growing up in Lebanon, Mayssa Karaa was trained in classical music. While she loved singing, a future in civil engineering was her life plan. It was the sage advice of a famous French conductor that guided her to a professional music career. “He told me, ‘When you meet God he’s going to tell you, ‘I gave you a gift–what did you do with it?’ At that moment, I realized that I wanted to sing for the rest of my life. I was fortunate enough to have a father who believed so much in me, to the extent that he had already applied to Berklee College of Music in Boston on my behalf and had an audition set up and said: ‘It’s you and me, against the world.’ She graduated from Berklee with a degree in Professional Music. From there, her possibilities were limitless.
Mayssa’s musical message is about empowerment and overcoming adversity. Her philosophy of life, in her own words: “After traveling a lot and exploring different parts of the world, I realized happiness is not about the place or the country you live in. It’s about the world you create around you, it’s about creating your own happy place. Have an open mind, travel far enough until you meet yourself, don’t settle for what you were told is right or wrong, things are not always like they seem to be. There’s more to the world than you think.”
Cinema audiences might identify Mayssa’s voice from the hit film American Hustle, where her Arabic version of the ‘60s classic “White Rabbit” was a standout track on the Grammy®-nominated soundtrack album. Television audiences might also recognize her from the popular PBS-TV Special, Enrico Caruso: His Life, His Cities, His Music, featuring Placido Domingo in Naples (she is also featured in the follow-up that was released in the Spring of 2018). And international might know her from “The Arabic Alphabet Song” from Sesame Street that generated over 22 million YouTube views.
With the U.S. as her current home base, Mayssa, who sings in nine languages, has traveled the world performing music in a fusion of east and west, with key performances in palatial settings for the L.A. Philharmonic, as well as in the United Arab Emirates, in Belgrade, Serbia, at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam, at the Unesco in Paris, and stateside for featured concerts at Boston’s historic Faneuil Hall and the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles.
With music as her passport, Mayssa says that it was never an intention to come to the U.S. and live inside of a bubble. “I came here to expand, to tell others about my culture and learn about theirs. What surprised me was how people here are open to learning about new cultures, and how free I felt. I was born and raised in Lebanon, but I am very much an American, too. I’m like you.”