“Watch out Carrie Underwood” – Ken Scott
“This is really fuckin’ good” Hamilton icon and Blackie and the Rodeo Kings member Tom Wilson admitted after seeing Mackenzie Leigh Meyer perform at Dave Rave’s (Teenage Head) 2015 annual Shake Rock and Rave holiday show; but this impressive, young, country singer/songwriter has been building buzz in the local music scene for quite sometime.
Launched into the music scene after winning the 2013 Hamilton Music Awards Rise to Fame Competition, the now 23 year old has already begun playing all over Ontario; performing at major festivals like Mattawa Voyager Days, Canada’s Largest Ribfest and Canal Days; where she has shared bills with the likes of Doc Walker, Chad Brownlee and Runaway Angel. You can also find her on regular rotation at the majority of southern Ontario’s A-list country music venues, including The Stampede Ranch, The Stampede Corral and The Oshawa Corral; last year alone spending 336 hours performing over 75 gigs.
In 2017, she graduated with honours the renowned Music Degree Program at Humber College where she studied voice and performance with some the top musicians in Canada, including Rik Emmett of Triumph who commended Meyer on her “mature and disciplined” approach to songwriting. Honing her craft for the past four years, it was only a matter of time until she’d begin drawing major attention to her music.
In 2016, she caught the eye of esteemed producer/engineer Ken Scott (The Beatles/David Bowie/Super Tramp) who commented “Watch out Carrie Underwood” after producing her debut single Should Have Known. The combination of Ken’s classic rock sensibilities and Mackenzie’s emotional singing and pretty pop melodies creates a unique and tasteful twist to her modern country sound; unveiling a song that fuses Taylor-Swift-type writing with a classic rock aesthetic. But this is only one of the many colours seen on her debut EP.
Dive Bar Diva’s beauty is seen in it’s ability to flaunt all of the diverse and dynamic sides that comprise Mackenzie. The EP soars through the many sub-genres of modern country music; ranging all the way from the vulnerable-americana “Your Company” to her confident, attitude-riddled-blues “Hope You’re Lonely”, and rounds off with her poignant, emotional ballad “More than a Memory”. It results in one of the more authentic and enchanting perspectives to come along in country music in years, creating a world both bold, broken and incredibly cathartic.