Premiere: Jocelyn Mackenzie Debuts New Single, “Mango Leather” | Under the Radar - Music Magazine
Wednesday, March 3rd, 2021  

Premiere: Jocelyn Mackenzie Debuts New Single, “Mango Leather”

Debut Solo LP PUSH Due Out January 29 Via Righteous Babe Records

Jan 19, 2021 Photography by Ester Segretto.
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Brooklyn singer/songwriter Jocelyn Mackenzie has returned with her latest single, “Mango Leather,” premiering with Under the Radar. Best known for her time in the folk pop trio, Pearl and The Beard, Mackenzie has been gearing up towards the release of her own solo debut record, PUSH, coming January 29th via Ani DiFranco’s Righteous Babe Records. Mackenzie has released a handful of singles from the project already, “The Brave Ones” and “Better,” giving fans a taste of its soaring chamber pop melodies, lovingly arranged string quartet accompaniment, and muted synth percussion. 

“Mango Leather” once again delves into the depths of Mackenzie’s inner world, as she meditates on the spiritual nature of human existence. Once again backed by a triumphant string quartet arrangement, courtesy of Franz Nicolay of The Hold Steady, Mackenzie delivers a spirited, powerful vocal perfromance amidst swelling gospel harmonies. She extols both the beauty of humanity and it’s mundane simplicity, singing on the song’s jubilant climax, “You are nothing, you are everything! / You are made of bone and meat and galaxies!” The accompanying video, directed by LA-based director and editor, Joshua Kilcoyne and filmed COVID-safe in Mackenzie’s Brooklyn bathroom, examines the contrast between the mundane and otherworldly as well. Mackenzie alternates between simple morning routine and fantastical shots of Mackenzie’s found object makeups, culminating in a colorful, stirring climax. 

As Mackenzie describes the song, “Mango Leather” is a love song to my greatest fear... being human. It wrote itself in a whirl of emotion on a songwriting retreat I was facilitating one year after battling a real gnarly bit of mango leather between my actual teeth. It describes my human brain's instinct to incongruously translate mundane moments of inconvenience into life threatening circumstances, and what that implies about the balance between my cognition as an upright mammal and my awareness of myself as a co-creator of the universe. It describes how our social tendency to create order out of chaos turns our human instincts into masochism, and how those battles are only won through acceptance. “Mango Leather” reminds us that we are not human beings learning to be spiritual, but spiritual beings trying to be human.” Check out the song below and watch for PUSH, out January 29.



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