Maya Salafia’s single “First Grade” captures that unforgettable first love
Updated: Feb 15
Boston singer songwriter, Maya Salafia’s new single, “First Grade”, released Valentine’s Day weekend, brings us back to the first love connection that forever sticks.
Most of us have a first love memory with that special someone who made us experience love in a special way for the very first time. As the famous quote says: "First love never dies." That special, sweet, and innocent first love will linger on and be something to be cherished many years forward.
When listening to Maya’s song, the audience is invited to reflect back on their own first loves. The song also makes you wonder why your first special love is so difficult to forget.
Perhaps that first love reminds us of the gifts of being seen, cherished and valued. Yet, not all relationships can weather change, which is inevitable. Those with “staying power” the relationships that help us grow into our full selves, are sometimes harder to come by.
By remembering the earlier feelings of that first love, we can connect to what freshness, and the joy of coming alive in new ways, feel like.
The lyrics of “First Grade” create a visual of that precious, first love feeling, along with igniting memories that are pure, candid and heartfelt. The song beautifully straddles the line between the personal and the universal, with imagery and emotion relatable to all.
The song’s lyrics take you back to the innocence and joy of that first-grade classroom…
A little part of me wishes that you could have just stayed
The first day of first grade
I’ve got my head on your shoulder dreaming of when we’re older
The smile on your face dancing around the room
Pairing up in class sitting right next to you
We wave our flags up high waving in the wind
Wishing we could fly so this could never end
In all of Maya’s originals, whether it’s a ballad or an upbeat tune that you can dance to, she likes to use imagery in her lyrics to tell a story and share her inner world and experiences with her listeners.
Maya has been writing pop music since she was nine years old, and she released her debut EP of six original songs, Trapped in a Daydream, at age thirteen. She has ten additional songs written, which she plans to bring to the recording studio soon.
Maya started playing piano at age five and wrote her first original song at nine years old. Her piano teacher, Paul Jacobs, saw how much she loved writing songs, and encouraged her to step into the recording studio.
Maya’s fascination with music started when she was a very young toddler, as she would make up little songs to play and sing on her baby piano. One of her first memories goes back to two years old when she was sitting in her car seat singing along to folk/soul/blues singer Eva Cassidy.
The lead producer for “First Grade” is two-time Boston Music award-winning, platinum-selling producer Malik Williams from Liptunes Music. Malik’s mastery captured the essence of the song’s innocence and the excitement of first love’s emotions.
“Maya is a naturally gifted, prolific songwriter. Her music and lyrics flow with ease. Her songs weave a story, with images and melodies that effervesce off the page, capturing her audience in each moment.”-Malik Williams, Liptunes Music
Also, on the “First Grade” production team is Owen Korzec, Production Manager for Performers on the Go, LLC, an original artist and production engineer who created the song’s arrangement and performed on keys, drums, guitar and percussion.
Maya is a participant in the Performers on the Go Program, and has performed in many shows around the Boston region, and in several livestream singer-songwriter events.
Maya’s musical influences include Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran, Shawn Mendes, Ruth B., Jack Johnson, Clairo, and Conan Gray.
However, her favorite is Taylor Swift, for her storytelling and writing capabilities, and the full substance and emotion of her songs.
When asked what words and adjectives describe herself, Maya responded with “focused, creative, artistic, observant, perceptive, joyful, and kind.
Although Maya loves pop music, she is also a classically trained pianist, and a classical ballerina. She started ballet at age two and went on pointe at eleven years old. She has danced in eight Nutcracker seasons in the Boston area, with Jose Mateo, Moscow Ballet, and Koltun Ballet. During Covid, she continues her ballet training remotely via Zoom classes.
About her music Maya says:
“I want people to hear, feel and experience the real, authentic me, and I hope that comes through in my music. I love to use imagery to tell a story in my songs, and to share my true self and a piece of my heart and mind with my audience. Also, even though I am only fifteen, which some might consider young, I strive to be taken seriously as a prolific songwriter and performer.”-Maya Salafia, singer-songwriter
Maya plans to attend college, majoring in music with a focus on songwriting. Until then, she will continue writing new songs and performing wherever possible, from small intimate venues to large stage shows.
Maya continues to train diligently, working with vocal coach Sharon Erman. Sharon recently passed the Level 5/Mentor Panel Test with the Institute for Vocal Advancement (IVA), a ten-year continuing education program for voice teachers to improve their teaching skills, and gain invaluable knowledge, insight and wisdom.
“Maya’s love for song writing shines through in her performances and honest lyrics. You visualize the story behind the lyrics, and want to hear more, forgetting her young age. Her music is alive with joy, and is full of melodic hooks that stay with you.” -Performers on the Go, LLC
You may find Maya on Instagram @mayasalafia and will find her music on Spotify and all streaming platforms.
Written by Patricia Duffey, Performers on the Go, LLC