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Bonnaroo 2023: Interview with Maddy O'Neal

Maddy O'Neal laughs during an interview with Haley Solomon at Bonnaroo 2023.
Photo by Nessa Parrish
Maddy O'Neal laughs during an interview with Haley Solomon at Bonnaroo 2023.

“Dirty Funky Bass Music but make it pretty.” That’s the motto of Denver-based electronic DJ and producer Maddy O’Neal: one of few women making waves in the electronic music industry. Growing up as the daughter of a touring musician, Maddy spent her childhood surrounded by creative self-starters. So, it’s no surprise that as an electronic artist and DJ, everything she knows today, she taught herself. She started with producing, to better understand how a song gets from individual samples and ideas to a full fledge piece with layers, melodies, hooks, and drops. Then she started composing her own music and playing out late-night sets. She found a group of fellow aspiring DJs who all became like family as they came up in the industry together.

Today, she considers herself lucky to be a part of such a loving and supportive community. One that has now grown to include French DJ CloZee, a fellow female electronic artist whose iconic sound has earned her a place among the greats. In fact, one of Maddy’s best-known singles is a collab she did with CloZee during the pandemic. The single is called “Zest Please” and was produced over the course of a few months and multiple back-and-forth editing sessions. Speaking on the collab, Maddy said it functioned as a lifeline for both of them, a way to create in an environment that was otherwise isolating and uninspiring.

Speaking with Maddy at Bonnaroo 2023 was a blast. She was so warm and personable and greeted our entire team with hugs. She seemed genuinely happy to be at the festival and to play her music for people. Maddy has a new EP coming out soon called “Mind over Matter,” which she says contains some of the coolest music she’s ever made. Be sure to check it out!

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Production Director, Producer & Host at WUTC of The Haley Solomon Show, ElectroNights with Haley Solomon and Wild Woman Radio.
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