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Backstage with Elias – Maya Satterwhite

About three years ago I was handling the stage production for an event called Vibrations. This event featured live music, art, and creativity produced and performed by, from what I recall, individuals mostly in their teens, and early 20s.

One of the artists who performed was a then 19 year old Maya Satterwhite. She came in with her dad, and her guitar. She performed a few original numbers, and left an indelible impression on me. “That was one the first time coming out playing some new songs on my guitar, testing it out,” she said.

The 22 year old North Buffalo/Kenmore native recalls her first experience performing. “I started really young. I want to say the first thing I remember is in 1st grade, I did a little solo in chorus. It was kind of my first experience on a stage, and I was really excited about it.” Maya then continues, “I started songwriting, maybe in middle school, when I first got my guitar, then went to a studio when I was in high school.”

Photo shot by Brandon Lua

Regarding her earliest influences, she says, “My first was Michael Jackson, just watching him perform. And Beyonce. All the music played at my house. Both my parents loved to listen to music. My dad is an actor, and my brother is an artist, an illustrator, so we have art in our family. But music just came to me on my own, I guess.”

Recording engineers at Audio Magic and Starfields Productions introduced Maya to top local session musicians with whom she would go on to record with. Those players would in turn introduce her to other players, and it would open up a network of musicians whom she would go on to record and perform with.

Photo shot by Darron L. Whitsett

She has since branded her creativity as Maya By Name. Creating a marketing network is her next step. “We’ve created a product, we’ve created a solid sound I’m trying to make my own… now how do we market that outside of here, that’s the goal.” Her goal is to market her music to the national hubs in the United States, and open up networks to Europe and Asia.

Maya is also a model, which falls under the brand. She has been working with an agency based out of Cleveland. “I’ve been modeling on the side, so that helps me do music full time. I model for my music.”

Her next performance is March 2 at Imagine Events Center, which celebrates the release of her new album ‘She’. The show will include the new material, plus material from her two previous projects. The group consists of Hayden Fogle, Damone Jackson, Chuck Brown, Jonathan Boyd, Alex MacArthur and Victoria Mordaunt.

Maya clearly has a vision of where she wants to take her career.  “Creating your own opportunities, making the connections, and networking, figuring out how you want to do things, finding the right musicians, and making it happen.”

Her music can be found on all streaming services, and online platforms:

Facebook.com/mayabyname

Instagram.com/mayabyname

Open.spotify.com/artist

Music.amazon.com/artists

Photo shot by Darron L. Whitsett

Lead image shot by Demario Perry

Written by Elias Benavides

Elias Benavides

A goofy kid from Buffalo's lower west side who loved to play the guitar and loved live music. Has moved on to sound engineering, stage lighting, anything live music. Now he's writing about musicians on BR too. Why am I talking in the third person?

View All Articles by Elias Benavides
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