The New EP Feeling Colors drops September 16
By Jeff McCord
As much as anything, it was a leap of faith. Moody Bank$ grew up in Torrence, California, came to Texas to play college basketball at Concordia in Irvine, and moved around a lot of other places. She ended up with a psychology major, working in behavioral therapy.
“I never really felt like it was what I was supposed to be doing,” Moody confesses. “Everything was good and I was following all the rules, but I kept having a void inside of me, and I didn’t know why. I got a job offer actually, in Austin to work at this studio. Within a week I was just like, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m going to do this.’ I just packed up all my stuff and drove to Austin and that was it. I never looked back.”
Even so, making her own music was not her game plan.
“I have always been a singer and I’ve always written songs, but I never actually felt like I could personally do it for a living until I came to Austin. I was just surrounded by so many beautiful people making art and making music. It’s truly where I found myself. I started working at the studio and seeing the artists come in. And I would hear beats that people were making. And I was like, ‘Man, I want to sing on this beat.’ So one day somebody was like, ‘Hey, you want to put something down?’ And that was it.”
‘It’ eventually became her first EP, Full Blunts & Full Moons, released three and a half years ago, showcasing her affinity for timeless R&B.
“I listened to a lot of old school R&B with my mom, Jill Scott, Erykah Badu, Luther Vandross. Newer stuff, too. I love Frank Ocean. I just have this innate desire when making music to connect it to those old-school feelings.”
Yet as time passed, Blunts looked different in the rear-view mirror.
“After I released that, I really wanted to hone in, take my time and just focus on my sound. And then COVID happened. It gave me a lot of time to really digest and process what I really wanted and what I wanted to say and what I wanted to sound like.”
A renewed focus is in evidence on the tracks from her upcoming EP, Feeling Colors, out in mid-September. There’s an assured melodicism and sense of direction this time out.
“This album is super special to me because I worked with Juwan Elcock of Blk Odyssy. He helped me put this whole project together; it’s honestly a joint project between both of us. Without him, I wouldn’t have been able to hone in and create this new sound that I found for myself.”
Despite all the challenges, Moody wants to take her new sound on the road, too.
“I’m definitely planning to tour. God willing. I’m just going to release it to the world and see what happens.”