Multi-hyphenate vocalist and performer Marlee XX is from Washington, DC, and she has performed in a variety of musical genres. Also referred to as a “one woman band,” performing as a DJ, audio engineer, producer, vocalist, and songwriter. Her personal style, which combines punk, street, and fantasy, is audacious and fearless, adding to the artistry. Marlee XX’s music is as unique as her style. Her energy is infectious and her passion for music is evident in everything she does.
When it comes to music, the old adage “it’s all about the journey, not the destination” couldn’t be more true. And that’s certainly the case with the song “Frequency” by Marlee XX. On the surface, the tune appears to be a dark, serious, and brooding piece with a thumping, club-ready beat. But if you take the time to really listen to the lyrics, you’ll find that they’re actually quite uplifting and inspiring. The song is all about connecting with your inner self and raising your vibration toward the path of spirituality and aligning with the universe. The song starts and also ends with a bang. There are so many musical layers here. I highly recommend listening to this song at full volume or on headphones to enjoy every small nuance. I am sure you’ll be hooked from the first listen. If you’re looking for a song to get your heart pumping and your blood flowing, look no further than Marlee’s “Frequency.”
The production on “Only One” is top-notch, with the guitar loops, percussion, and vocals all working together to create a unique sound. The song is a perfect example of how various genres can be combined to create something new and exciting. The bassline is particularly catchy, and the lyrics are both honest and relatable. The delicate balance between various elements in the song is what first caught my attention, and the bouncy bass and synthesizers keep me coming back for more. And Marlee’s voice is beyond beautiful. Whenever I hear it, I can’t help but smile and dance along. If you’re looking for a feel-good song that will make you want to move your body, then I highly recommend giving this song a listen. I guarantee you’ll fall in love with it just like I did.
We had the chance to interview Marlee about her latest work and future projects. Here’s what she had to say.
1. Hey Marlee XX! Congratulations on the release of your new singles “Frequency” and “Only One”! We’re excited to hear what you’ve been working on, and we’re sure your fans are too. Is there a particular reason you decided to release two separate singles on the same day?
A: Thank you! It’s an exciting moment! I chose to release a double single to give a glimpse of the range of sounds coming on my upcoming full length project. Since the project is not being released until the new year, my mixing engineer Sam J Garfield suggested that we give two singles with two polarizing sounds to carry us over the holiday season and spark interest in what’s to come.
2. What inspired you to write “Only One” and “Frequency?” Any specific details you would like to share with us?
A: I’m usually inspired by the music when I write songs and this was definitely the case for these records. Both are produced by Lightfoot, who has such a fresh, unique and captivating sound. “Only One” was heavily inspired by the vocal sample on the beat and its tropical peaceful energy. It felt carefree, romantic and warm, definitely love song material.
With “Frequency”, the same approach brought out a really unexpected anthem. The beat was actually already titled and included the intro by Mike Wallz, which inspired my writing. Being a fan of the energy, messages and approach of Kendrick Lamar, this record was my way of channeling that stadium sound.
3. How has your creative process for “Frequency” and “Only One” differed from past projects?
A: The production and the recording process. Working with a new producer who is a California native has opened me up to new sounds that I haven’t had access to on the east coast. This definitely brought something new out of me. In addition to that, these are both songs I recorded and mixed on my own in my home studio. Recording myself in my own space and time has given me the freedom to hone in on the details and capture myself much more authentically.
4. I noticed that “Only One” is in collaboration with Ayotemi. How would you describe the collaboration process between you and Ayotemi?
A: Alignment! With the subject matter of “Only One”, once I recorded the chorus and verse I felt like I had said enough. I also wanted to emphasize the afrobeat element in the song. Coming across Ayotemi’s work, (as he is also a native of the DC/DMV area) seemed like the perfect fit. Since it was during the pandemic we weren’t able to record together in person, but he nailed it.
5. What’s one thing you want your listeners to take away from listening to your songs?