Matthew Alexa

Matthew Alexa

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Rock - General | Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Total Song Plays: 16   
Member Since: 2007
   Last Login: over 30 days ago

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Matthew Alexa Bio

Creating modern rock with a dose of alt-country wasn't exactly the plan for Halifax's Matthew Alexa. With a focus on achieving perfection in his drumming, he constantly practiced. This included four hours a night on weekdays and seven hours a day on weekends. He practiced with the intent of eventually studying at the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts and becoming a professional session musician. That all changed the Christmas of 2006 after Alexa felt shooting pain in his left arm when drumming. Even hitting the snare drum caused unbearable pain. After consulting doctors and physical therapists, he was told he wouldn't be playing drums for a while. He didn't get back to drumming regularly until 2010.

Instead of giving up on music, Alexa refocused his musical pursuits. He turned to songwriting, something he didn't get to do as a drummer for the numerous bands he played in. Alexa would studiously read through musical theory books, learning how to craft diverse songs. He also picked up the piano and took lessons from accomplished Halifax musician Erin Costelo who took on the role of songwriting mentor. If a vocal performance lacked believability, she'd tell him. Costelo pushed Alexa to stretch his talents and write better songs that told a story listeners could connect with.

In July 2011, Alexa revisited the songs he started writing at home four years earlier. After seeing an advertisement in a recording technology magazine for Los Angeles session players, he contacted the group to help take his songs to the next level. Alexa sent tracks to the players who would then re-record and add parts to the established framework.The original guitar and bass tracks were re-recorded and string arrangements were added. Songs written and recorded in his Halifax, Nova Scotia apartment were transformed into the big production, American blues rock sound he had always envisioned.

Alexa's self-produced debut album Chasing Airplanes is firmly planted in today's modern rock, but draws on elements of American country and blues. Each song on the album feels fresh yet connected by a similar sound. From the Nashville country guitar solos of "Only Mine" and anthemic power pop of "Not Sorry" to the fiddle of "Take Me There", Alexa touches on elements of the artists and albums that have inspired him. The lyrics are personal, exploring the hurt of a finished relationship to the questions that are stirred up when a friend is diagnosed with a life threatening illness.

The album was mastered by Grammy award winning Brad Blackwood (Maroon 5, Alison Krauss & Union Station, Three Days Grace). Alexa's long time musical collaborator Eric Patton co-wrote five of the tracks and worked on the record during pre-production. The album is authentic and organic, relying more on recorded guitars, bass, fiddle, string quartets, percussion and background vocals than programmed sounds. Chasing Airplanes is a musicians project built on honest songwriting and exceptional instrumentation.