Review by Abby Kenna
Michelle Lockey’s “I Should’ve Done Better” is a graceful work of self-reflection, decorating healthy communication with acoustic pop elegance.
The song builds around a warm guitar progression, lightly plucked to provide buoyant, agile percussion. Lockey is careful to not let her arrangement speak over the message of her lyrics, working in subtle, atmospheric instruments rather than blaring rock kits.
While ethereal synths resonate in rafters, mild layers of vocal harmonies buzz close to the front of the mix. Echoing with expansive reverb, each of these elements intertwines to depict Lockey’s genuine intention. She leads listeners through a realization we all know too well: that we’ve let someone down that we love. Using descriptive words and deliberately grounded melodies
“I should’ve loved better / But I kept you at arms length”
The narrative tone of the lyrics in “I Should’ve Done Better” is bolstered by the emotive, dynamic nature of her vocal delivery. She sings with the conversational twang of folk, but dances through pop melody to create a contrast that is both vulnerable and catchy.
“You were kind, you were caring, you were patient /
I was selfish, I was jealous I was jaded…”
With a shift in motivation, the bridge portrays one final push of emotion. Lockey leans into her heartache, putting the melodic rhythm on a sharp incline to show her impassioned determination. She warms the soundscape with layers of harmonies and alters the overall color of the section with a new chord progression. Through these compelling lines, listeners can really experience “I Should’ve Done Better” alongside Lockey.
Bristling with delicate guitars and vocal nuances, “I Should’ve Done Better” is a beautiful portrayal of Michelle Lockey’s authentic voice as a singer-songwriter.
Michelle is a multi-award winning recording artist and performing singer- songwriter/producer from Maryland. She is also a Hollywood Music In Media award nominee, Global Music Award Bronze Finalist, a three-time Washington Area Music Award Nominee, Silver Winner for Songwriters Association of Washington and Grand Prize Winner in the 2013 John Lennon Song Contest. Michelle has many album & single releases, including two singles released by Black Toast Records. She is currently working on a new EP due out in the Fall of 2023.
Michelle has become well respected in the industry of licensing music and teaching about the music licensing business. Her long sync placement list includes: the theme song for Gear Heads, A feature song in Hallmark’s Hope at Christmas, multiple songs in the Young & The Restless, Speed Kills film starring John Travolta, Young Sheldon First Look trailer, a song in Netflix’s Locke & Key, a prominent placement in Amazon Prime’s Good Girls Revolt & The Path, The Voice, Harry, Reign, The Fosters, USA's Benched & No Tomorrow, Netflix’s Longmire, CBS Inside the PGA, the CW Fall Promo, CBS Fall Promos and much more.
One of her most notable accomplishments was to be able to have a concert/Fundraiser to help raise awareness and funds for Pulmonary Hypertension, which her niece suffers from. The concert featured some of the songs she has written over the last 10 years and the stories behind the songs. The concert replay can now be seen on her website along side information about Pulmonary Hypertension. Michelle was also a winner of the Grand Prize in the Folk category of the 2013 John Lennon Song Contest for her song, “Your Footprints” written with fellow songwriter Paul Otten.
She gives back to the community by mentoring musicians, holding workshops & teaching courses on how to build a business in Music Licensing. She also holds workshops for women to help them face fears, find their self worth, passions and achieve their dreams.
Michelle’s music and Indie/Alternative Folk sound is influenced by Alvvays, Warpaint, Melody’s Echo Chamber, Hope Sandoval, London Grammar, Lykke Li, The XX, Daughter, Ingrid Michaelson, Sheryl Crow, Tristan Prettyman, Meiko, Birdy, The Lumineers, The Head & The Heart, The Civil Wars, Colbie Caillat, and Oh Honey. ). She performs at corporate events & venues such as Bethesda Blues and Jazz Club, Signature Theatre, and in Concert series such as Focus Music and Stone Room Concerts, Festivals at Leesburg Flower Festival, Main Street Music Fest, Frederick, Maryland’s First Saturdays and more.
For more information on Michelle Lockey, please visit her website!