MoZella

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Not to be confused with Mozilla.
MoZella
Birth name Maureen Anne McDonald
Born (1981-05-13) May 13, 1981 (age 33)
Origin Detroit, Michigan
Genres Pop
Years active 2006 - present
Website http://www.mozellamusic.com

MoZella (born Maureen Anne McDonald, 1981[1] in Detroit, Michigan) is an American songwriter and recording artist. Along with her own artist success, Mozella recently co-wrote the Miley Cyrus/Dr. Luke Billboard #1 Wrecking Ball. Some of Mozella's recent co-writes include "Fools Gold" off One Direction's latest album FOUR, "Feels Like Vegas" with Tinashe and Stargate along with "Secrets" by Mary Lambert and much of her debut album Heart on My Sleeve. Additionally, Mozella has been in the studio with Madonna helping pen her March 2015 release Rebel Heart. Mozella co-wrote 11 of the 19 tracks on the iTunes pre-order, including the single "Living For Love." Crossing genres into film, television and theatre, she co-wrote "A Little Party Never Killed Nobody" with Goonrock and Fergie for Baz Luhrmann's "The Great Gatsby." In early 2014 she continued her work with Baz Luhrmann, penning "A Beautiful Surprise" with David Foster for Luhrmann's musical theatre adaption of his cult classic film "Strictly Ballroom". Mozella's latest TV sync success is the usage of her song Love Is Endless in the 2015 McDonalds "Archenemies" campaign. Additionally, her cover of Bob Dylan's "Things Have Changed" is currently being used by Chrysler for their latest US commercial and her songs are also being featured in several of the latest Microsoft spots.

Early in her artist career, she toured with Dave Matthews Band, Lifehouse, and Five For Fighting while signed to Warner Brothers and Universal records. In the past 5 years, her music has also been featured in multiple television series' and national TV campaigns. Some of her licenses include Mercedes, Verizon, Amazon Kindle, Nissan, JC Penney, Aqua Fresh, Oral B, and more.

MoZella has released Three full-length albums, I Will (Warner/Maverick, 2006) and Belle Isle (Universal/Motown, 2009), and "The Brian Holland Sessions" on Belle Isle Records, as well as three EPs, MoZella (Warner/Maverick, 2005), The Straits EP (Universal/Motown, 2009) and The Love EP (Universal/Motown, 2010).[2][3]

In July 2012, Mozella performed on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and was also featured on NPR All Things Considered (while promoting The Brian Holland Sessions).

Early life[edit]

MoZella was born and raised in Livonia, Michigan, where she first got her start as a performer booking her own gigs in coffee houses at age 15.[4] Immediately after graduating from high school, she set out for Los Angeles to pursue a career in music. She took a day job decorating cakes, leaving her free to perform at coffee houses in the evenings. In 2002, MoZella was invited to England to write and record with Tim Saul, producer for Portishead. After she spent six months in Europe, she returned to Los Angeles when label interest was building.[5]

Music career[edit]

Warner/Maverick Records[edit]

MoZella signed to Madonna’s Maverick Records in July 2003. In 2004, when Maverick was absorbed into Warner Bros. Records most of their artists were dropped, however, MoZella was amongst a select few who survived the merger. In July 2005, she released her self-titled debut EP on Warner/Maverick Records. Then, in November 2006, she released her full-length debut I Will (produced by Jude Cole) on the same imprint. I Will was well received by fans and critics alike. Allmusic.com even called MoZella, "One of the best things to come out of pop music this year."[6]

Universal/Motown Records[edit]

MoZella signed to Universal/Motown Records in July, 2008. She immediately enlisted multiple producers for her second album, including Marty James, Jimmy Harry, Tony Kanal, Sunny Levine, and Smidi. ‘The Straits EP’ was released on July 7, 2009 on Universal/Motown Records. On October 20, 2009, her album Belle Isle was released.[7]

The Brian Holland Sessions on Belle Isle Records[edit]

Mozella released The Brian Holland Sessions on July 24, 2012. She co-wrote the album with legendary Motown songwriter Brian Holland of the famous trio Holland-Dozier-Holland. It was co-produced by Dave Wilder. On July 26, 2012 Mozella performed a song from The Brian Holland Sessions on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. She was also interviewed on NPR's All Things Considered. The album has been mentioned or featured in rollingstone.com, grammy.com, USAtoday.com, and spin.com.

Touring[edit]

Following her Warner/Maverick debut in 2006, MoZella toured the U.S. with Tyler Hilton, Dave Matthews Band, Lifehouse, Five for Fighting, Daniel Powter, Michelle Branch, and Colbie Caillat.[4]

Film and TV placement[edit]

Licensing: Her songs have been featured in countless movies, trailers, and television series' including Fringe, The Closer, The City, Castle, The Hills, Bones, One Tree Hill, Love Bites, The Biggest Loser, American Idol, etc. Her song "More of You" was prominently featured in the first episode of Pretty Little Liars and on the soundtrack. She's also had multiple syncs in Grey's Anatomy. She has written and recorded numerous songs used in commercials including "Amazed" for Mercedes Benz, "Thank You" and "Let’s Stop calling It Love" for Nivea, "Magic" which was featured in Verizon's "iDon't" Motorola Droid campaign. "This is Love" and "Glow" were used in the 2011 and 2013 JC Penney holiday TV advertisements. Her song "Love is Endless" was featured in the endless.com ads and synced in the Katherine Heigl romantic comedy Life As We Know It (and on the soundtrack). In 2012, MoZella's cover of "Some Like It Hot" (made famous by Marilyn Monroe) was used for the Carl's Jr./Hardees "Drive-In" ad; the ad featured model Kate Upton and a Southwest patty melt. Mozella's songs are also used in the latest Nissan commercials. Previously, her songs have been used by Special K, Nestle, Tesco, and others. In addition, her songs are currently featured in ads for Oral B, Amazon Kindle, Falabella, AquaFresh, Walls Ice cream, Chrysler, Microsoft, and more.

Discography[edit]

  • MoZella EP (2005)
  • I Will (2006)
  • The Straits EP (2009)
  • Belle Isle (2009)
  • The Love EP (2010)
  • "The Brian Holland Sessions" (2012)

Co-writes[edit]

MoZella has penned songs with and for Miranda Cosgrove, Shontelle, and co-wrote "Undone" and "Oh My" feat. B.o.B with American Idol finalist Haley Reinhart for her debut album Listen Up! She co-wrote Fergie's A Little Party Never Killed Nobody with Goonrock for Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby movie. In 2013, MoZella co-wrote Miley Cyrus' first Billboard number 1 "Wrecking Ball" with production helmed by Dr. Luke along with "FU" and "Someone Else" on Miley's acclaimed album Bangerz. Mozella also co-penned (along with Ryan Tedder of One Republic) the song "Tumbling Down" for the American The Voice season 5 winner Tessanne Chin. Mozella co-wrote "Secrets" and much of Mary Lambert's forthcoming album Heart On My Sleeve.

More recently, she has been working with artists such as Kelly Clarkson, and Madonna on her new album Rebel Heart, in particular its lead single "Living For Love"

Songs written[edit]

Discography
Artist Album Song Co-written with
Tessanne Chin Count on My Love (2014) "Tumbling Down" Ryan Tedder, Noel Zancanella, Lil' Eddie
Kelly Clarkson Piece by Piece (2015) "Take You High" Jesse Shatkin
Miley Cyrus Bangerz (2013) "Wrecking Ball Dr. Luke, Stephan Moccio, Sacha Skarbek, Henry Walter
"FU" (feat. French Montana) Miley Cyrus, Rami Samir Afuni, Karim Kharbouch
"Someone Else" Miley Cyrus, Michael L. Willams II, Pierre Ramon Slaughter, Timothy Thomas, Theron Thomas
Madonna Rebel Heart (2015) "Living for Love" Madonna, Thomas Wesley Pentz, Toby Gad, Ariel Rechtshaid, U. Emenike
"Unapologetic Bitch" Madonna, Thomas Wesley Pentz, Toby Gad, Ariel Rechtshaid
"Illuminati" Madonna, Toby Gad, Larry Griffin, Jr., Mike Dean
"Bitch I'm Madonna (feat. Nicki Minaj) Madonna, Thomas Wesley Pentz, Toby Gad, Ariel Rechtshaid
Mary Lambert Heart on My Sleeve (2014) "Secrets" Mary Lambert, Eric Rosse, Benny Cassette
Rihanna Home (Dreamworks animated movie)" (2015) "Dancing In The Dark" Stargate, Esther Dean

References[edit]

  1. ^ David Jeffries, "MoZella", AllMusicGuide
  2. ^ Mitchell, Gail (August 7, 2009). "Billboard.biz Q&A: EMI Music Publishing's 'Big' Jon Platt". [1]. Retrieved 08/07/2009.
  3. ^ "MoZella Album Cover" (September 8, 2009). [2]. Retrieved 09/08/2009.
  4. ^ a b Adams, Lauren; Benaym, David; and Tidwell, Danny (Summer 2006). "Discovering MoZella". Movmnt Magazine. Pages 60-63.
  5. ^ Frazer, Bear (May/June 2007). "MoZella: Decorating Cake and Sharing It Too". Skope. Page 40.
  6. ^ Brown, Marissa."MoZella: I Will". [3]. Retrieved 09/08/2009.
  7. ^ "MoZella Album Wraps" (March 7, 2009). [4]. Retrieved 09/08/2009.