Having a love affair with music for most of her life, Maria Elena has been a part of a variety of musical endeavors. The Great Plains was a band started with her husband Jason in Beijing, China. The band laid the foundation for some of the musical direction she wanted to take as time went on. After moving back to the states with Jason, she recruited a new band of Kansas natives, each bringing something their own to the table, and changed the name to her own; Maria Elena. With a thriving line up consisting of Jason Teubner (lead guitar), Brody Wellman (bass), Scott Taylor (drums), and of course herself as vocalist and songwriter, they worked together to make the “Hollow Bones” record what it is today. The album is a testament to where they are at with their sound right now.
With the release of the full length “Hollow Bones” album, Maria Elena breeds a fresh feel from some classic genres. Lush with southern folk instrumentation, a soulful vocal approach, and tons of pop sensibility, the record boasts the aesthetic of Americana anthems.
The first single, “Atlantic”, begins rich and sweet with its beautiful guitar work, followed by its smooth, but passionate vocals as its natural flow allows it to breathe as it plays on.
“Atlantic was written in Maine during a songwriter's retreat that I attended which was hosted by legendary songwriter and folk artist, Catie Curtis. While I was there I was compelled to describe the changing fall colors and the jarring cold of the rain and of course, how beautiful and all-encompassing the ocean was. But what struck me most was how I was surrounded by all this nature and beauty and despite it all I just wanted to get back to the prairie and the openness of Kansas.” explains the songwriter.
Although the single does speak volumes for the album, to get a real understanding for where Elena is coming from, it should be heard in its entirety.
“Hollow Bones represents the best musicianship on anything I've ever recorded. Working with players who are so adept at their instruments has allowed my writing to grow more complex (as far as progressions or time goes) and has given me the confidence to occasionally write with more space as to better allow my collaborators an opportunity to write their own parts or solos.” says Elena of her recording process for the project.