Imagine Artist to Watch: Leah Culver
Cover Photo from Leah Culver’s Facebook Page
Where the ladies at?!
No seriously, where are they?! Another electronic music festival is set to take place in Atlanta with only one female artist on the line up. Unfortunately, this is not just a problem with Imagine’s lineup. Flash back to Shaky Beats Festival earlier this year that only had one solo female artist, TOKiMONSTA, and one duo, BONNIE X CLYDE, that featured another female performer. There are plenty of artists that could have fit the Imagine lineup. Alison Wonderland, REZZ, Anna Lunoe, Maddy O’Neil, and a handful of other women producers would have made great additions to the line up.
So who is the one women holding it down at Imagine Music Festival?
Photo from Leah Culver’s Facebook Page
Leah Culver is a producer, powerhouse vocalist, songwriter, and DJ from Atlanta, Georgia. She was raised by musicians, her mother played the drums and bagpipes while her father played the didgeridoo. Her older brother even DJ’s in the drum and bass genre. Her influences include Paramore, Lady Gaga, and Slipknot. Originally under the moniker MK Ultra she began playing local shows in 2011.
When asked why she retired the name she told Magnetic Magazine: “I picked MK Ultra based off of Project MK Ultra which was a slew of government experiments that were taking place in the ’60s. The goal was to get scientifically closer to obtaining full control of the mind’s ability to control other things. I chose to be my own name because I’m ready to just be me, and I feel it’s a better artist name because of how negative of a connotation Project MK Ultra has with it when you really dig deep into researching it. These weren’t all nice experiments and it actually hits closer to home than I was initially aware of and I’ll just leave it at that. It was just time to make the switch to who I am, Leah.
MK Ultra is also a marketing issue when it comes to google algorithms and coming up first. I’ve had a lot of people ask me to sing more and so that’s what I’m trying to give them, more of my own vocals. I feel my own name fits better for what I’m putting out now long term.”
After gaining notoriety in Atlanta, she moved to Brooklyn and shortly thereafter Los Angeles. Splitting time on both coasts, she began to making more music. She began to really break out with the release of her single “Powerlines” in 2015. She has played at festivals like Tomorrowworld (RIP), Counterpoint (also RIP), Impulse, Magnetic, and Imagine.
She was catapulted into main stream when she was featured on Marshemello’s track “FLY” (which now has over 55 million views on YouTube). In addition to this major collaboration she has also worked with Adventure Club, Jack U, and many others.