In The Spotlight: Singer/Songwriter & Actress Malynda Hale

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Today, we have singer/songwriter and actress Malynda Hale! Hailing from Santa Barbara, CA, Malynda got her start singing in church, and also participated in musical theater in school. "Santa Barbara was very eclectic, and I was always exposed to different genres of music," she said of her hometown. Her father was also a musician, so she grew up listening to many of the greats like Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, and Whitney Houston. "I think being exposed to so many different styles did help me to craft my own," said the singer, whose own style is within the pop/soul realm.

The singer attended Azusa Pacific University, majoring in Opera and minoring in Musical Theater under the university's Vocal Performance program. With all of this knowledge and experience in music, Malynda began booking gigs around L.A. and released her first project, No More Tears, eventually moving to New York a few years later. "I just wanted a change of pace, and I started getting into doing theater again," she said of the move. "I ended up doing shows all over, [but] never actually did a show in New York."

Hopping between the Big Apple, L.A., and eventually Chicago where she lived with her now- husband, Malynda was able to expand her career in TV, film, and commercial, and found a new love for music again, specifically in Chicago. "A lot of the projects I was involved in, I got to offer music up for those," the singer said. "I started doing gigs around there as well. It was such a different culture in Chicago, and appreciation for music." Having released several musical projects of her own , Malynda moved back to L.A. after her husband finished law school a few years ago.

This past week, Malynda has released her fourth album, Pieces Of Me, which reflects her broad taste in music. "The album is called Pieces of Me, because it is a very eclectic album," she said. "I have pop stuff, It has some soul [and] R&B. It has some throwback kind of feel stuff." The project features her latest single, "Gray," was released back in September, which Malynda co-wrote with producer Kevin Porter, who produced most of the project. "Gray," is actually an older track that was written a few years back, but then revamped for the album. "The concept behind the lyrics, which I know a lot of people can relate to, is just being in that friend zone, where you're in this kind of gray area with a person," the singer said of the track.

Pieces of Me reflects Malynda's own stories of conquering fears, love and heartbreak, and struggles in the music industry. She poured out her heart, creating a project with a lot of personal messages. "There's so many ups and downs in this album, which is how life kinda is anyway," she admitted. There's a lot of of ambiguous tracks as well, which Malynda wants listeners to interpret in their own way, and use the music to help them with their own personal journeys. "I hope people find that one song or several songs that they can connect to, that they can play over and over," the artist said. "Or hear those lyrics, and say, 'Wow, I really felt that way,' or 'Wow, I really see what Malynda was going through.'"

Malynda balances her music career with a bunch of hosting, spokesperson, and acting opportunities, which definitely keeps her on the move. "I always say that I would rather be busy than bored," she said with a laugh. She has appeared in several television series, films, and commercials, and co-hosts after-show programs on The Walking Dead and The Vampire Diaries.  Malynda is also the proud spokeswoman of Valana Minerals makeup and MASI Shop clothing. Though it keeps her really busy, Malynda wouldn't have it any other way! "I just love being a part of the entertainment industry," she stated. "If I can be an influence in the industry by being prominent in different areas, then I'm happy!"

In addition to all of her work in entertainment, Malynda also heads up a great organization called meTOO!, which fights for relationship equality. "It basically talks about the correlation and similarities between same sex relationships and interracial relationships, and how both groups face adversity," she said. "But we're all kind of going through the same things [in relationships], so you're able to say 'Hey, me too!'" Malynda and her team conduct photo shoots with different couples every few months, and share their unique stories with others. "It's really just based on love, and I think the world needs more of that," said the artist, who is in an interracial relationship herself. Those in interracial and same-sex relationships are still being discriminated against, and Malynda has created an organization that serves as a support system for them.

In terms of what sets her apart, Malynda believes that her classical background gives her voice a different tone. The singer is also very vocal about what she believes in and stands for, even in her music and on social media, and also makes a constant effort to connect and have open discussions with her listeners and others. In the future, Malynda wants to have a theme song written for a TV show, expand the meTOO! campaign, and reach as many people with her music as she can.

You can check out more from Malynda on her official website. as well as Soundcloud and YouTube. You can also follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

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