Name: Leche Malo
City: Monterey, California
Medium: Musician /// Writer
Where are you originally from and how did you find your way to the Monterey area?
I was raised in a house betwixt a grove of eucalyptus in Seaside. My close friends call the place Old Heaven Hill… It’s a really thin place - like, the veil between reality and whatever else is going down behind the scenes is pretty flimsy. Since then, I’ve traveled the country a number of times. Finding myself back in Monterey County is always a given. Couldn’t tell you why.
How would you describe your process?
Foreplay. Everything just leading up to a moment. I’ve spent enough time songwriting and learning theory that when that moment of inspiration strikes I know exactly what to do with it. The truth of the song is so dependent on that visceral moment to me. I can’t sit down anymore just with the intention of write; it comes when I least expect it. A song created from too structured of a space always feels oddly disconnected. I wrote all my favorite songs in one go with little to no editing. It’s like they always existed but and I’m just finding them in the air from time to time.
Tell us something about yourself that most people might not know.
I have feelings and traumas and thoughts a million miles an hour and headaches and anxieties and insecurities and an entire unexplained history like you and your homies and most everyone you pass in the street does. <3
Who are some artists, local or otherwise, that you hold in high esteem?
Locally, I’m really inspired by this guy Brendan Dean. He writers under the moniker 'Rodger the Rover!’. He’s a younger guy in the military and late last year there was this big scare that he was going to be uprooted and moved to another state at any moment. He had always wanted to record an album during his stay in Monterey. With what he thought were his last couple weeks, he totally did it. That’s commitment. Just one human, one mic and a handful of instruments. I hear such life affirming intensity from start to finish of that album. It’s called ‘Letters’… It’s great. Check it out. My favorite painter is José Basso.
Where do you find yourself drawing the most inspiration?
Most of my art is very directly about me, especially these days. I’ve come to this revelation that I can just write how I talk. It’s so simple it hurts. We can all just write exactly how we feel but that’s all dependent on truly knowing ourselves. So basically getting to know myself is the biggest inspiration and that’s through my love life, my friendships… All such things.
What advice would you give to other emerging artists, especially those who would like to use their art as a means for income.
I’m still learning this, but being an artist seems all about intentionality and self truth. Making art is the most beautiful thing and making money is often one of the most hideous things. Just keep that in mind. Don’t ever dull the sharp blade of your life’s work to make a couple bucks. We have to believe there are people out that will reward you for doing exactly what it is you're inspired to do. Maybe some folks can, but I sure can’t take wedding photos if I really want to be shooting macros of colorful lichen. I can’t keep my edge through that, you know? Hustle and make that skrill, but do it on your own terms.