Maci Wainwright Sings Country

 

Written by Jill Allen in the September 2005 Issue
She’s considered by her fans to have incredible talent. Some even consider her a star.

She has performed all over Oklahoma and has been to Nashville and back several times, showing off her songwriting and singing talents. She has opened for country music artists Sammy Kershaw, Lorrie Morgan, Highway 101, Wade Hayes, Jim Ed Brown, Helen Cornelius and Gene Watson. And she has accomplished all of this by the age of 15.

Maci Wainwright was born in Edmond in January 1990, the only child of Mark and Prissy Wainwright. During her younger years, life was pretty normal. She went to school, attended church, had friends and did all the things every other fun-loving kid does.
But when she was 7 years old, her parents discovered a quality in her that makes her who she is today.

“I was 7 and I sang in my first school talent show. I sang ‘My Heart Will Go On’ from the movie the ‘Titanic,’” Maci said. “It was my first standing ovation.”

But she didn’t recognize her talent then.

“I didn’t even really begin listening to what my voice sounded like until I was like 9 or 10,” she said. “But I guess my parents heard it.”

“I just enjoyed singing and I was always putting on performances for my family,” she added. “But then I auditioned at the Oklahoma Opry and I made it. People who saw me perform started calling my dad to book other shows and that’s how (I was discovered).”
But her biggest gig is yet to come.

“(Right now) I’m working in Nashville with country singer Sherrie Austin and country music producer Will Rambeaux … I’m working on a record deal,” Maci said.

But her singing includes more than the country genre.

“The people I’m working with in Nashville have let me decide I have a blues thing going on. And I definitely have a gospel influence. I thought about being a gospel/Christian artist but country is what I like to do because it has more subjects (to sing about) like love,” Maci said.

Image is important to her as well.

“I’m not a Jessica Simpson, a girlie girl dressed in pearls and high heels. I like to dress up in jeans, cute tops and T-shirts. My music is harder edge country,” she said. “When I was younger I would watch Christina Aguilera. I watched how she moved on stage. I also love to watch rock bands. My parents think I’m weird for liking some of the artists I do, but it’s very inspiring to see the honesty in their music and genuineness of their performances. It’s not like they are just some ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ radio creation,” she said.

As for the performers who choose to flaunt their bodies on stage, Wainwright said she believes there’s more than one way to be sexy.


“You don’t have to show yourself off. I think feeling sexy is leaving something to the imagination,” she said. “If they want to do it, more power to them. But I feel like if there’s something to your music then there’s more to your performance than your hot body.”
Her parents are involved in every aspect of her singing career.

“My dad is working as my manager. He books my shows and organizes my schedule. My mom is the stable, grounded support system. She’s my stylist and she makes my clothes. She’s amazing. If I ever get overwhelmed she pats me on the back and says it’s OK,” Maci said.

Her support system doesn’t stop with her family.

“I do have a boyfriend. He gets me. He knows when to let go and when to stand by me. He’s so selfless. He’s my best friend. And my best friend Brittany, she goes everywhere with me; she actually acts as my assistant. I have friends that support what I do,” she added.

Maci said she gets her inspiration from everyday life.

“I also get inspiration from what I see in movies or in other people’s lives. Sometimes (I’m inspired) from prayer or I get ideas (for my songs) from my imagination,” she said.

Maci is currently working on getting a record deal in Nashville, but in the meantime, her music can be enjoyed through her three previously recorded CDs.

Her most recent CD, “Good Day,” can be found at Borders Books & Music on Northwest Expressway. Or you can send $15 plus $2 shipping and handling to Sugarbear Productions at P.O. Box 950, Bethany, OK 73008.

You can also purchase her first two CDs by sending $10 plus $2 shipping and handling to the above address.

To see Maci Wainwright perform this month, join her Sept. 10 at the Centennial Rodeo Opry at 7:30 p.m. or at the Oklahoma State Fair Sept. 15-25 at the OPUBCO Pavilion at 14 Flags Plaza.

To learn more about Maci, visit her website www.maciwainwright.com.
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