a personal welcome
Hi, welcome, it is my pleasure to have you here.
I’m Nate, a modern troubadour, sharing songs and stories to inspire open hearts
“Maingard writes protest songs for lovers and love songs for rebels.” -Angela Weickl
My songs are about the deeper journeys we all experience as humans learning to make sense of this one precious life we have each been given.
This video says it all pretty darn well:
I have been playing guitar, writing songs and appearing on stage since 1998 and have been playing as a professional musician since the beginning of 2011.
In 2012 I was awarded a South African National Arts Festival Ovation Award, which means that some relatively important people think my art is rad. I’ve played many of South Africa’s festivals and in the course of 2011 I played over 100 shows around South Africa.
My 2013 EP In The Shadows was crowd-funded, which was totally wild and beautiful! The EP was recorded in London with artists who have worked with Adele, Paul McCartney, Jason Mraz and many more.
In 2014 I launched my Patreon page and am now supported by ‘The Nateives’, a tribe from all over the world who share the journey with me as I travel the world offering my songs and stories to the people I meet.
I’m not a rock star; I don’t get up onto the stage to separate myself from my audience. I’m not interested in fame for its own sake. What I’m excited about is the conversation between me and you who find peace and meaning in my music.
I hope to cross paths with you some time soon, fellow traveller.
official long-form bio
“My songs have been my signposts along the road to self discovery,” shares the Cape Town, South Africa-based modern troubadour Nate Maingard. “They’ve emboldened me to put my truth forward and not let fear drive me.”
This shamanistic storyteller is lighting the way for others to seek their truth with his emotionally intimate indie–folk. Nate’s uplifting aesthetic traverses Radiohead thoughtfulness, and the literate tradition of 1960s and 1970s folk icons like John Lennon, Cat Stevens, and Nick Drake. He’s been featured in magazines, blogs, newspapers, and podcasts around the world. In addition, Nate has established a rich global profile through international touring, live streaming, public speaking, and fostering meaningful dialogue through online discussions.
Nate has previously issued two full lengths and one EP, and he’s currently preparing a career milestone album. Select highlights in his journey include playing over 100 shows around South Africa, ranging from intimate house concerts to big festivals, and touring Germany, Mexico, Lithuania and the UK. In 2012, he won a prestigious Standard Bank Ovation Award at South Africa’s National Arts Festival.
The realm of crowdfunding has become a seismic force in Nate’s artistic journey. Currently, Nate is in the top 500 creators on Patreon (a pioneering sustainability and Good Samaritan crowd-funding platform) where he has a base of over 500 patrons, affectionately dubbed “Nateives,” worldwide. The Nateive community also gathers together on a closed Facebook community that’s 300 members strong.
Nate Maingard’s earliest memories are of being naked and barefoot, celebrating the raw wilds of nature in Cape Town, South Africa. His family life reflected these idyllic free-spirited environs. His mother came from an English Literature background and was consumed with poetry and prose. His father was a luthier, an acoustic guitar maker, and a fan of 1960s folk music and classic rock. As a teen, Nate and his father built the guitar he plays to this day (incidentally, people often remark how the instrument’s resonance perfectly complements Nate’s singing voice—after all, the two have clocked many miles together).
Over the years many layers of societal and cultural expectations distanced Nate from his core roots, and he lost sense of his emotional authenticity. “I struggled trying to fit into a mold of what being a man was by outside standards,” he confides. “I found myself looking in the mirror at someone that wasn’t me, and I made the conscious decision to be vulnerable and communicate honestly with the world.”
In 2010, Nate had a transformative moment while on a trip to California visiting a friend. While cutting potatoes for a meal his friend was preparing, he has a profound realization. “I wasn’t cutting them to her liking, and I felt this inexplicably overpowering fear overtake me,” Nate says, still marveling over the scene. “I went outside and wept, realizing that I was so terrified of making mistakes that I didn’t take any meaningful action in my life.” Months later, Nate embraced his destiny as a fulltime musician.
Nate’s catalog of songs glows with life-journey enlightenment and breezy folk-pop songcraft. Standouts on his previous releases include the sun-kissed “Little Brother” (from 2013’s the In The Shadows EP) which boasts golden vocal harmonies; the invigorating Zen-like “It’s The Little Things” (a 2016 single); and the intimately rustic “Barefoot Romance” (from the 2012 sophomore album Home).
His latest album, tentatively titled Always Wandering, is shaping up to be an artistic masterwork. Sonically the album will feature a rich tapestry of sound, including layered voices, lush atmospherics, and excerpts from stories. The aim of this multi-dimensional approach is bring to life the troubadour tales inherent in Nate’s music.
“These songs come from an eagle eye’s view of my subconscious, away from obsessions and end-goals. This music is about existing right now, in the moment as it is,” Nate shares.
The infectiously catchy title track playfully mixes the refrain “always wandering” and “always wondering.” “That evokes the eternal journey to find a place to rest your head, both physically and emotionally” reveals Nate. The sweetly sensual “Lovers In The Morning Light” sings of the virtues of sensitivity and open communication inherent in intimate moments.
It’s been years and miles since Nate came home to himself as a courageously vulnerable being. Looking back on his path he says: “My journey has taught me to be comfortable with myself. I hope by sharing the gifts of this self-discovery adventure, I can inspire others to embrace what’s real in their hearts. That’s my job in this world—that’s who I am.”