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Divine Magazine: Interview with Mathew V

Mathew V is returning to his roots, but his triumphant return to the classics follows an impressive footprint through many corners of modern music.

After 10 years of classical operatic, jazz and theatrical vocal training, Mathew V moved from Vancouver, Canada to London, England at the age of 17. Here, he found his signature soulful vocal style. Following his musical awakening overseas, Mathew accomplished a lot following his return home to Canada. Mathew penned a deal with 604 Records and his debut single “Tell Me Smooth” entered the top 40 on Canadian Radio & Billboard Charts for 18 weeks. His debut album The Fifth charted in both Canada and the US, earning critical acclaim from press outlets such as Nylon, American Songwriter and Billboard. In recent years, Mathew has become a sought-after topliner in the dance world, with #1s in 34 countries and landing cuts with Vigiland, Shaun Frank, Raaban and more. In 2022, Mathew’s project “The Outer Circle” was nominated for Adult Contemporary Album of the Year at the Juno Awards. Now with a catalog with over 85 million streams, Mathew is making a bold return to the jazz music he was raised on, introducing a rich and powerful side of his voice to the world.

How would you describe the music that you typically create?

The music I typically create is very vocally focused. I could hear my favourite singers sing the phonebook and I would know exactly how they feel based on how they sang it. I connect with those emotive vocals and that is at the centre of all the music I make. 

What is the best advice you’ve been given?

“Don’t let the highs get too high and don’t let the lows get too low.” My manager Jonathan Simkin gave me that one. Music is an industry where you have to take a lot of rejection on the chin. On the other hand you can’t let the win’s go to your head or curve the work ethic. Staying right down the middle and just focusing on the work has been a wonderful pointer for me. 

What is your current music project about?

My new album is called “Anything Goes” and it’s my take on the great jazz standards. It’s been really fun working on this record because I’ve been able to deliver these classic songs from my perspective as a gay man. 

What is your favourite song to perform?

I tested a lot of the jazz music on tour this past October and “My Boy” was the fan favourite for sure. It’s the one original song on the project and it was super fun and challenging writing a song to fit in this era of music. 

What is your top two favorite albums of all time? Why those albums?

“Come On Over” by Shania Twain and Paloma Faith’s “Fall To Grace” both influenced my musical taste and style in so many ways. These records soundtracked two different formative periods of my life and they both have no skips! 

What was the last TV series you watched on TV?

I’m a big Real Housewives buff. I reluctantly confess that I watch every franchise. 

Which fictional character do you wish was real?

Funny you ask this because I just landed from a long flight and I watched The Minions movie on the plane. When I tell you I was laughing the entire flight. Minions, final answer. 

Do you shout out the answers at the TV whilst watching quiz shows?

Every single time. I would love to be on The Weakest Link. I have a delusion of grander when it comes to trivia and I think this would help put me in my place. 

What would be a good theme song for your life?

“That’s The Way It Is” by Celine Dion. I wish I had a great explanation for you, but I just imagine me walking down a sidewalk with this in the background and it just feels right

If you were talking to a younger version of you, what advice would you give yourself?

Your time is much better spent worrying about what you think rather than about what others think.