Press Pass LA was thrilled to sit down with one of the most exciting new artists in Los Angeles, Manika. Manika was discovered by Michael Jackson’s long time manager, Frank DiLeo and has already performed at hot ticket events including Kiss FM’s Wango Tango, Hallmark Hollywood Christmas Parade, and the Hollywood Style Awards. We sat down to discuss her new record Double Album.
Manika is originally from Las Vegas and moved out to Hollywood to pursue her music career which has included highlights like performing at the Girl Scouts’ 100th Anniversary tour and touring with One Direction in 2011. Manika’s music has a unique sense of style and edge, garnering her over 5 million fans and counting.
Her personality is bold yet sweet and she brings her own vibe to the mainstream pop genre. She describes her new single “My Way,” as an anthem to young women across the world with a message to follow their dreams.
Prior to Double Album, Manika had two super hits- “Just Can’t Let you Go” and “Good Girls” which are still growing in popularity. But her career success isn’t the only reason Cosmo Girl called Manika, “the next big thing” and Seventeen Magazine said she was “ready to rule the pop scene.” In fact, Manika’s is also a published children’s book author with The Exciting Adventures of Boo and a philanthropist. She donated the profits from the first 750 copies of her book sold to the Society for the Prevention to Animals and became their teen spokesperson. Additionally, Manika is a proud supporter of the NOH8 movement and has volunteered with Habitat for Humanity.
Check out our exclusive Interview!
PPLA: What influenced you to come out to L.A. and pursue music?
MANIKA: Well, actually Frank Dileo approached me. I had always been making music and trying to do as much on my own. At that point, he took on managing me and I moved out to L.A. I was seventeen at that time.
PPLA: What has inspired you to become a musician? Did you come from a home of musicians?
MANIKA: I just felt most comfortable when I was with my music, for instance, when I was in preschool, I was so shy and I would not talk to anyone except my closest friends and my parents. But there was a stage and I would go out there and start singing and dancing! As soon as I would come off stage though, I would be shy again. I just felt most comfortable there and that’s where I could express myself and be myself. I am also a lot of different ethnicities- Chinese, Japanese, Philipino, Spanish, Malaysian, and Scottish. My ancestors, you know, have music as being very dominant in their culture. It was usually a part of every family get together, sometimes we even printed out a program! All the kids performed and danced. Some of us were like, “Mom why are you making me do this?” (laughs)
PPLA: Where do you find your fan base
MANIKA: The great thing about my Facebook page- I have about 3.2 million fans- is that you can see how many are from each country! There are quite of bit from the U.S., obviously, but also Brazil, Indonesia, and Philippines are the predominate countries. Through online and social media, you can reach the world now. It’s mind-blowing. It is just “WOW”. One of my fans just messaged me from the Philippines and that’s a 20-hour plane ride away, and it’s instant on the computer. It’s still kind of crazy to me.
PPLA: How does it make you feel to know you have so many people that support you?
MANIKA: Knowing that people all around the world listen to my music and love me, it’s amazing. It is a surreal moment when you really think about it.
PPLA: Can you talk about your single “My Way” and talk about what influenced you to create it?
MANIKA: That is one of my favorite songs, and I really relate to it. Actually every time I perform it, people tell me they really relate to that song. When I play that song, they go kind of crazy over it! It’s about how sometimes people try to shove you around and say do this or do it that way, and you have to listen to what you believe is right and what you are feeling. You need to do it your way. People at school would say, “stick to the books,” but I said I was going to do it my way and do music.
PPLA: Can you talk about your children’s books?
MANIKA: When I was 15, I wrote and published my children’s book, and it’s 140 pages and it is based on all the lessons I learned in my childhood up to that point. I started writing it when I was 12 and it took me three years to complete it.
PPLA: How would you describe your latest album?
MANIKA: It has some stuff from when I was first starting out, from when I was 17, more younger and sugar sweet pop. As I grew and matured, my music started growing more mature with more rock elements in it. It is supposed to be two albums, the younger one and the more mature one, combined into one album, hence the title Double Album. It explains my whole journey.
Check out Manika’s latest music and updates about the release of Double Album due to release this month at MakinaOfficial.com
Watch her video for My Way.
Like Manika on Facebook.
Follow Manika on Twitter.
Subscribe to Manika on Youtube.