In 2002, Mia found a new home with Columbia Records’ Columbia Jazz imprint and re-recorded songs drawn from her previous albums with fuller instrumentation and more involved production, aided by Mitchell Froom and Yves Beauvais, resulting in The Golden State album. When Columbia Jazz was shuttered, Todd moved on to the Plug Research label, continuing to pursue more orchestrated arrangements on a significant portion of her fifth album, Manzanita, 2005. There she was joined in the studio by friends, Brent Rademaker and Rob Campanella. While some songs were reserved for just her voice and guitar or piano, others feature cameo appearances by members of Dead Meadow, Beachwood Sparks and the entire band Future Pigeon. In 2006, Manzanita was followed up by La Ninja: Amor and other dreams of Manzanita, an album of remixes by Dntel, DJ Nobody, Flying Lotus and more. La Ninja also had three altogether new tracks and a cover of the Beatles’ song „Norwegian Wood.“
Mia is a true artist — an expressionist in many forms. Her garden of song is vast with flowers of infinite shape, color, size, and individuality. GEA is her most intuitive and primal collection of songs yet. Full of incredible passion and sensitivity, these songs reveal the depths of Mia’s emotions, visions and lyrical heart. The album opens with Mia playing guitar and harmonium accompanied by Andres Renteria on hand drums and prolific Chicago-based bassist Joshua Abrams (Sam Prekop, Prefuse 73). Broken, surviving, searching, and hopeful, Mia begins to sing and chant, flowing in the great “River Of Life” that all beings travel. The songs each follow suit beautifully, evanescently, featuring woodwind, brass and string arrangements by the young and talented multi-instrumentalist/composer Miguel Atwood-Ferguson. His arrangements seem to lift Mia on their wings for a mystical journey of intense projection, romance, mourning, and otherworldly imagery.
Mia has toured the US and Europe, headlining and opening for other artists, including Throwing Muse Kristen Hirsch, Lou Barlow’s Folk Implosion, Saul Williams, The Books, and Dungen. Having released records with labels as major and established as Columbia and as progressive and boutique as Plug Research, Mia is now enjoying her return to the homegrown approach. In addition to her lengthy music discography, Mia has choreographed and performed three solo dance pieces and dances with the group, Body Weather Laboratory.
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