Maya's Radio Orchestra

Debussy and Radiohead collide in ethereal folk-jazz melding

Samantha Maya is a Glasgow based alt-folk singer-songwriter, harpist, and violinist who creates textures with dense harmonies, classical instrumentation and pithy lyrics. She performs live using a loop pedal to create magical sound worlds. 

"As if Debussy and Sufjan Stevens had a baby and left her in the forest to be raised by Björk"


Maya is an award winning harpist, violinist, and singer-songwriter with a first class honours degree from the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Her work draws on both classical music along with traditional Scottish culture and contemporary innovation. 

She was the recipient of the prestigious Paolo Nutini Scholarship 2022 for songwriting through the University of the West of Scotland where she is studying a masters in Songwriting. Her tracks explore disappointment and lost love, the feelings of belonging (or the lack there of), and draw on her childhood experiences of being mixed race within a chocolate-box cotswold village. Maya's latest single was featured in SNACK mag, and her projects have been featured on BBC Radio 3, BBC Scotland (Travelling Folk and Classics Unwrapped), BBC Radio Ulster (album of the week). She's recently performed as part of sofar sounds, Dirty Laundry, supported Clare Sands on her tour date at the Hug and Pint, headlined at Broadcast, and has upcoming gigs with AMPLIFI at the Queen's Hall, Lay Low, and Celtic Connections.

Maya is currently working on creative arts based practice exploring synthesis between process and product, the physicality of how to hold a song, and time consuming paper 2D stop motion and how to slow down time.

Sun trap - May 3rd!

Sun trap is the new Luminescent synth-laced dreamy jazz, a lazy summer vibe by Maya's Radio Orchestra.

Suntrap is the luminescent new single from Maya’s Radio Orchestra, hinting at dusty underground jazz bars with sweeping strings, swirling harps and honey-like vocals. Piano underpins the structure with an understatement that fully supports the warm arrangement. Easy jazz but with elements of classical music and triphop, a melting pot of influences coalesce supported by Maya’s masterful writing and playing of strings, harps, piano and glockenspiel. 

The expanded jazz band is punctuated with glittering whispers of synths from Producer Lauren Gilmour whilst lazy drums reminiscent of Portishead or Zero 7 keep us in a dreamlike trance. 

Maya says: “When I wrote this song it was the end of February, and the midst of a very long dark, damp, Glasgow winter, and I was feeling very down. We underestimate how difficult the winter in Scotland can be, all whilst having to continue with our day-to-day lives as if we’re not affected by nature and the lack of sunlight. 

Writing this song was my way of processing this uncomfortable realisation that capitalism and the need for productivity is incompatible with our human nature, and that it’s having a detrimental effect on our communal mental health.” 

However, despite the darker inspiration, this is a feel good song -  a celebration of humanity and of taking joy in the small moments in life. A sunshiney vibe that takes us out of the dark and into summer. 

Maya says: “My favourite place is sitting high up on Arthur’s seat in the balmy spring air and watching the traffic move below, leaving trails of light like fireworks or streams of fire. I wanted to encapsulate those moments of calmness and peaceful living within the song.”

Cowritten with Jamie Campbell from Dignity Row and Rusina Lukekh.

Vocals, strings, harp, piano: Sam MacAdam

Drums: Audrey Tait

Bass: Andrew McDowell

Recorded by: Sam MacAdam and Lauren Gilmour

Mixed & Mastered: Lauren Gilmour 


Press Release - Suntrap Pree Release containing information for Suntrap, bio, and links to press photos 14.5 MB

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Press / Reviews

With beautiful mellow honey like lead vocals, subtly gorgeous harmonies, delicately decadent harp playing and a track which has authentic lyrics, this is quite simply music to savour! ” - Pablo Musicman
The vocals are equal parts soothing and haunting. The violin plucks in the background eventually morph into what sounds like an entire orchestra. The instrumental paints a picture of getting lost in a fantasy world; perhaps even in your own mind.” - Nick Teal

Teal Cheese

Press photos