Mona by Pennan Brae is just another killer number in the seasoned artist’s discography. It will be featured in his upcoming album by the name ‘Planted.’ The song takes you back to the puppy love of obsessing over a person. Further, it gives me major ‘Living Next Door to Alice’ vibes, but funkier. Like Brae’s music, Mona is a proper rock song. It has an electric guitar riff that gives the song an energizing vibe. The drumbeat is upbeat and quick, and the singer has soft vocals that never fight the instruments for attention.
Pennan Brae is a multi-talented human being based out of Vancouver of British Columbia, Canada. He is a musician, a screenplay writer, and even an actor. His film works can be found on Amazon Prime. Other than that the artist is also a fan of architecture and design, and clicking pictures of his electric guitars in front of gorgeous nature sceneries.
As the lyrics elucidate, the song is about teenage love – specifically the singer’s love for Mona. Or was it Rhonda? Wanda? Well, the point is he was utterly obsessed with them at one point. Their interactions, even when silly, bought him so much joy. He can recall everything about their relationship, and her knocking and coming to his door is something he still remembers. Only not sure with whom… and that is why I compare it to Living Next Door to Alice. The singer getting confused between the names in the second verse is the equivalent of ‘who the fuck is Alice?!’ To conclude, Mona is a rock song that will make you groove, miss your high school sweetheart, and get you confused about past events in your life too!
In conversation with Pennan Brae for the song Mona
Ques. You are a musician, but you’re also a lot of other things. How does it feel being an incredibly creative person who juggles hats all the time?
Pennan Brae:It’s just very nice to keep busy & bounce off different mediums. I find it helpful to switch from music to film & back again, especially in screenwriting music videos. It keeps one fresh & using different parts of your brain.
Ques. How did you get into creative arts, and music especially? What initiated you and how have you grown during your long career?
Pennan Brae:I started with classical piano lessons as a kid. I didn’t really enjoy them, but they provided a good foundation for the music. I loved playing popular songs on sheet music as a teenager. But it wasn’t until I was 18 that I began songwriting. Music became so much more rewarding at this point. I wrote my first song after I moved to a new town & was home for New Year’s Eve. I hadn’t met many people at the time & so was feeling a bit down & a song emerged from this emotion. & I’ve just kept chasing the feeling of musical discovery from there. I’ve evolved recently in writing on guitar & releasing albums that are 100% guitar-driven; my first songs were by piano. I still do keyboard tracks; it’s just a different avenue to go down.
Ques. What are some of your favorite musicians and your influences? How would you describe your own music to a new listener?
Pennan Brae:My favorite musicians are British acts such as The Rolling Stones, The Beatles & The Who. I also love the 1960s & 70s North American artists like Bob Dylan, Neil Young & The Eagles. & blues music of the 1940s & 50s with Muddy Waters, Elmore James & Howlin’ Wolf. On guitar, it’s Keith Richards all the way with Elton John on piano. My guitar-driven tracks are rock & roll oriented of the 1970s & 80s. My keyboard some are more pretty with violins & harmonies; more akin to 1980s & 90s rock ballads.
Ques. Let’s talk about the song Mona – your inspiration for it, your production process, and your takeaways for the listeners from this song.
Pennan Brae:‘Mona’ is inspired by a reminiscence of love gone by. It’s a howl under the full moon to pleasant memories of the past. ‘Mona’ is mentioned in Verse 1; ‘Rhonda’ in Verse 2. I began writing the track at home on guitar & eventually took it into Blue Light Studio in Vancouver to record. We added drums, bass & some beautiful background vocal harmonies courtesy of singer Alison Jenkins.
Ques. What should we expect from you in the time to come? Do you have any projects planned that you would like to shout out?
Pennan Brae: We just finished a vintage-style music video for ‘Mona’ which streams on my YouTube Channel. Coming October 8th is ‘Planted’; an album of 10 songs; ‘Mona’ is its lead single. The release is influenced by classic rock of the 1970s & will serve as the first half of a double album to be released in 2022. I’m currently working on music videos for songs off the album which will release during the year; hope you might enjoy them & thanks very much for tuning in!