If Kacey Musgraves and Meghan Trainor had a country-soul love-child, the result would be Calgary, Alberta based country artist Mariya Stokes. The Alberta Country Music Associations 2019 Female Artist of the year released her debut single, "Hands on My Body" in February 2019, introducing herself with a simple, sexy anthem that blurs the lines between country and pop. Her follow-up single, "Christmas, Arizona," was released in November 2019, and will be followed by her debut EP in Spring 2020.
Growing up in Stavely Alberta, Stokes spent time in her parents' small-town bar, and at eight years old, was sneaking in on Friday afternoons to sing with the local jam band. She has been pursuing music ever since with a heavy focus on songwriting. Multiple artists have recorded songs co-written with Stokes, including CCMA nominees Leaving Thomas ("Like I Used To", May 2019) and alt-pop singer Celia Palli, who is also a backing vocalist for Nelly Furtado ("Paralyzed", January 2019).
In 2019, Stokes opened for RuPaul's Drag Race superstar Trixie Mattel and Canadian pop sweetheart Jocelyn Alice in Calgary, Alberta. She was selected to work with Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame Inductee Terri Clark at National Music Centre in Calgary, Alberta during her RBC Masters in Residence Program. She was also runner-up in Project WILD, which is a country-focused artist development program run by Alberta Music and WILD 95.3 (Calgary).
Stokes cares deeply about her community and is an Artist in Residence for the Women's Centre of Calgary in 2020. Stokes produced and hosted two Live Band Karaoke fundraisers in support of the Women's Centre of Calgary. She also worked on a project with the Calgary Drop-In and Rehab Centre called "Shelter From the Storm", writing original songs, poems, and stories that captured the essence of the community with clients of the organization. They released their first album, also entitled "Shelter From the Storm", in August 2015 and released their second in June 2016, entitled "Verses Vs. Homelessness", which features her song "Lucky". She has also independently created and executed two coat drives for the Drop-In Centre.
Awards and Nominations
2019 Winner Alberta Country Music Awards (ACMA) - Female Artist of the Year
2019 Runner-Up Project WILD