After the success of her single “Alaska,” Maggie Rogers is poised to breakout in 2017.
It’s never easy to get discovered in a big way, but with Pharrell Williams’ stamp of approval, it has a better chance. Well, in the case of Maggie Rogers, she has that stamp. During a Masterclass at the Clive Davis Institute in New York City, Rogers showcased “Alaska” for Williams. As soon as the song starts, you can see the shock in Williams face (about 18:00 in). He clearly didn’t expect to hear that kind of song from a girl who described herself as a banjo player.
The lack of banjos wasn’t the thing that caught Williams’ ear. Rogers had created a sound that was unique. She took parts of several different styles and used them in a way no one else had. She had taken popular dance rhythms, added her folk songwriting, and topped it off with her masterful falsetto.
Pharrell’s sense of surprise is often shared when anyone first hears “Alaska”. The way Rogers smooth voice sits on top of the music is mesmerizing and hypnotic. The production is nearly perfect, each sound has a specific purpose and sits in its own space, but molds together seamlessly. The lyrics and vocals back the production up perfectly. As Rogers sings about a hiking trip she took in Alaska, you can feel the natural elements of her music. The song stands up pretty well even when all that production is stripped away, as Rogers showcased on Vevo Discvr.
Her second single “Dog Years” proves that “Alaska” probably isn’t a fluke. Rogers stretches her vocals a little more and relies slightly less on production, but it’s still an equally great song. She is certainly able to produce songs that will stand next to “Alaska”.
Maggie Rogers is definitely an artist to watch in 2017. The demand for her music has skyrocketed since the Pharrell video went viral. The music video for “Alaska” has almost 2.5 million views. Check out “Alaska” and “Dog Years” on Apple Music and Spotify. There are also a couple of folk albums on Bandcamp that Rogers released a while ago.