Nashville’s Mike Maimone wraps deeply personal tales in painterly allegory. While confessional at the core, the music’s aching honestly speaks to the universal. Indeed, the main theme of Maimone’s new LP Broke, Not Broken is how to function in society while poor. “I was an accounting major in college” says Maimone. “Most people don’t believe that. And when I look at my bank statements, I find it hard to believe myself. But I dutifully keep track of my books, so I know exactly how much of a loss I incur every month.”
Maimone grew up in conservative rural Ohio, not coming out of the closet to his Catholic parents until age 30. He was an all-state athlete in high school, who played against LeBron James, while having a deep appreciation and love for the arts. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame business school, but quickly walked away from corporate America. Maimone explains, “Through my songwriting, I try to turn these disparate life experiences into music that relates to all different people, helping us discover commonality.”
Now, a record whose sentiment rings true for far too many of us. Broke, Not Broken. It’s a record about how you can’t help but tie your self-worth to your net worth when your credit card gets declined on your 1st date. It’s about the stress that any unforeseen expenditure will derail your ability to buy groceries. And it’s about how every little setback seems Earth-shattering when you’re scraping the bottom of your bank account each month. Yet, fearlessly or foolishly, we persist. “Shuffling around debt with 0% introductory balance transfers has become an annual ritual” tells Maimone. “Though this isn’t a pity party. I’m broke – but I’m not broken.”
All of this ethos and themes from the record are well captured in his new single “WORK,” a track that takes on some of this rather depressive and dark topics and turn it upside down as he vents his sort of misery with an upbeat melody that seeks to lift his and audiences spirit.
About the song, Maimone comments “I was an accounting major in college. Most people don’t believe that. And when I look at my bank statements, I find it hard to believe myself. But I dutifully keep track of my books, so I know exactly how much of a loss I incur every month. Fearlessly or foolishly – or some combination of both – I’ve been funding studio time, marketing, self-booked tours, and paying personal bills on credit cards for nearly two decades. Shuffling around debt with 0% introductory balance transfers has become an annual ritual. This isn’t a pity party. I’m broke – but I’m not broken.”