Whajne (pronounced Wayne) is a member of the Whitefish River First Nation (Manitoulin District of Ontario), who has spent most of her life searching: for her purpose, for her family, for herself.
Taken from her parents as a toddler during the infamous Sixties Scoop, in which the Canadian government forcibly rehoused tens of thousands of native children, Whajne grew up without knowing her real name, to say nothing of her heritage. Her life has been shaped by a hunger for truth and understanding, a yearning that lies at the core of her artistry.
“My heart was searching for answers when I wrote this song. I had spent so many years convincing myself I was okay when I was really denying myself something I wanted so badly, and I think that is relatable. There is a sad love story being told in between the lines and by writing and pouring my heart out, I uncovered some truths… that the love I was seeking outside of myself was really the love I needed to find within myself,” says Madisyn Whajne.
“The song is about letting go and filling yourself up again. Being vulnerable can be such a beautiful thing and so much can be learned if we are open. I learned to be true to myself and pursue the happiness we are all entitled to.”
Whajne’s debut album is invigorating and bittersweet, demonstrating resilience and survival in the face of pain and heartbreak, blending elements of such artists as Alvvays, Snail Mail, Rilo Kiley and Real Estate. Here we find straight driving guitars and semi-gritty punk rock drums, topped off with vocals radiating a sunny surfer pop vibe… a little sultry with some attitude.
Earlier, Whajne presented standout singles ‘Killing Desire’, ‘One Shot’, ‘Dagger’, ‘Sweet Talk’ and ‘Summer Love’.
Whajne’s band includes producer Jay McBride on bass, James Gray (of Soft Set) on guitar, and her husband Bobby Bulat (of Basia Bulat) on drums. Rarely wearing her emotions and details her life journey in explicit narrative terms, Whajne’s story is written between the lines as she navigates love and trust, reunion and rejection, faith and fate.
“The video for ‘Save My Heart’ was filmed last fall. We hauled my air organ up to the top of Devils Glen and found the perfect spot to shoot. We only had a few hours and we made the video in record time. We kept the concept simple and I love the way it turned out. The song speaks for itself so the imagery can take over and almost be meditative. Shot and edited by Bobby, it was our first attempt at using the drone. It turned out so beautiful and cinematic though, I couldn’t be more grateful,” says Whajne.