EXCLUSIVE: Meghan Trainor Talks With Scene As Her Single Hits #1

by Catie Ragusa on September 11, 2014

Meghan_Trainor-webThis article originally ran in the 2014 September/October issue of Scene Magazine.

Twirling in waves of pink and purple pastels, Meghan Trainor is on her way to pop stardom. The twenty-year-old recently released her first hit single which has steadily risen on Billboard’s Top 100. The ascent of “All About That Bass” is fueled by a bubblegum pink music video directed by Fatima Robinson, the renowned music video choreographer and producer, well known for her work with pop legends including Michael Jackson and Prince. The video currently boasts over twenty-five million views on Youtube.

“She heard the song and was like, ‘I love it, let’s do it!’” Trainor said to Scene about Robinson’s enthusiasm. “Fatima came at me with the whole idea of pastel colors and the innocent girl who has booty poppin’ dance moves. And then she said, ‘I know this dancer on Vine.’”

The dancer was Sione Maraschino, a worldwide sensation on the micro-video social media site Vine. Trainor was thrilled with the idea. Although she had no dance background at all. “I never even had a lesson,” she laughs. “We had two days of rehearsal that were five hours each, and then we shot it. You can’t visualize what it’s going to look like until you’re there. So on the set, after I was done, I cried for hours and I was just so blown away by how good it looked.”

Prior to her single, Trainor made great career progress as a songwriter, writing songs for the popular country music band Rascal Flatts and multi-genre group Common Kings. “The A&R for Rascal Flatts sat down and played me their version, and I loved it,” says Trainor. It was her first time to hear a major music group sing a song she had written. “After the first words came out of his mouth, I was just crying. I loved it. And Common Kings, I love them so much! I love the lead singer’s vocals so much. I was honored to have him singing my new song. I got to prove to my publishers that I can do reggae and country, too! That I got this!”

Trainor gets her raw musical talent from her father. “My father was always in a cover band situation, so he never really wrote songs,” says Trainor, whose songwriting skills are largely self-taught. “I always figured artists just wrote their own songs, so I started writing them. I think I learned about verses, chords, just by listening to my favorites songs. I started writing them down and I got better and better as I grew older.” She started writing and producing her own songs in her early teens and realized her dream was to become a pop star.

MT_SINGLE_CVR_FINAL_HR-webTrainor got a publishing deal at only eighteen years old. She traveled to the Durango Songwriters Expo to learn as much as possible about the industry and how to improve her writing. “I was like, ‘Oh my gosh, I can write songs and get paid! This is great!’” she gushes. “My band would take me to see people who would critique my songs and tell me what I could improve on. I remember we went to this one place in Durango and I went home afterwards, and I said, ‘Alright, I’m gonna come back with a better album.’ And I went back, and that’s the year I got signed, because I took their criticism and their notes and I fixed my songs. I went back the next year, and I told them, ‘Look, I’m better!’”

Trainor’s dedication to improving her own work has paid off. After a quiet debut, one of her songs is now a bona fide hit. Scene declared it the “Song of the Summer” when we first heard it back in June. Shortly after, Trainor got a call from The Today Show. Her new life in the spotlight keeps her on her toes. A call to board a plane can happen at any moment. “It happened all at one time and it’s been fun,” she says. “This is life now. I’ve gotta be ready with a bag packed all the time!” Now living in Nashville, the seat of American songwriting, the bright, blonde and bubbly Meghan Trainor is working on her debut album with Epic Records. And she wants you to remember that “every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top.” Watch her music video for “All About That Bass” on her YouTube channel, MeghanTrainorVEVO, or catch up with her on Twitter and Instagram @Meghan_Trainor. She’s as cool as you hope she is.