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Interview: Kyler Daron

News, Straight Outta Nashville

13th January 2016

These past couple of months have been huge for Kyler Daron and his band. They’ve played Belmont University’s Rock Showcase, released an EP called “Whispers in the Woods” which was mixed by Grammy nominated Paul Moak, and played a release show at Nashville’s own The End. Although Kyler Daron’s band is in his name, it is clear that the band members are all about collaboration and fun — just watch them on stage. During their cover of The Killers’ “When You Were Young,” Kyler changes the lyrics to “I look a little bit like Jesus,” and captures the attention of the audience instantly. Combining humor, heart, and honesty, Daron’s music feel a little bit like home.

MusicDash: What drew you to Nashville?

Kyler Daron: I was brought to Nashville, like almost anyone, to be among some of the best musicians and artists in the nation. Choosing to come here was the best thing I could have done for my musical career. Being surrounded by all of these talented people really has made me up my game.

MusicDash: When did you start forming your band and how did you hone in on your sound?

Kyler Daron: I’ve been cycling through bands and members for the last four years or so. Some have stuck around throughout the years, and new friends have been made along the way. The group has really solidified in the last year, and we couldn’t have more fun doing what we do. I’m not sure at this point even that we’ve truly honed in on our song! Everything is still really fresh, and we’re still experimenting with our studio approaches and live performances of the songs. I’m also writing all the time, and trying to create from different perspectives and influences.

MusicDash: You recently performed at the Belmont University Rock Showcase, which is a pretty big deal around these parts. What would you say that you took away from the experience?

Kyler Daron: Rock Showcase was a straight up good time. That was our first time playing on a stage of that size with that much technology and production, and we had a lot of people come out and see us play! Things couldn’t have gone better in my opinion. To be honest, we were just honored to play the gig. There was a great lineup of bands and we made a lot of friends during the few days of prepping and playing the show.

MusicDash: Tell us a little about your new album!

Kyler Daron: ‘Whispers in the Woods” was almost a miracle. A few months after the release of my first EP “Ellie,” we started talking about going into the studio to record a few demos. We scheduled a session, and had about a month to practice for it. At the time we scheduled the session, we had two songs we planned on recording. At the end of that month, somehow we weeded up with six songs. It was wild. What was even more insane was that the recordings came out so well that we decided to just turn it into a record. We got more ambitious and launched a Kickstarter for mixing and mastering. The next thing I knew, I had a physical copy in my hand of something that I was truly proud of. These songs are organic. I almost feel like I didn’t write them, like I stumbled upon them somehow.

Despite how quickly these songs were written, they all kind of stem from a few realizations I’ve come to in the last years. The things I wanted to evoke in this record was inspired by the thought of being stranded, alone in some remote forest somewhere, without the constant pressure and distraction of culture and technology. What would you learn about yourself? What kinds of truths would one come to? What do we think about when we were taken out of the context of society? These songs are for the most part, the musical interpretation of things that keep you up at night.

MusicDash: What inspires you to create art?

Kyler Daron: I think that we have the fundamental desire to create as humans, We all have our own experiences and as artists I think our goal is to convey those things through an expression that can’t be communicated through a written or verbal dialogue. I love the way that people come together in that as well. My desire is to use my creative abilities in such a way that helps people understand themselves better and encourage them to interact with others in the world in a virtuous way.

MusicDash: Since the New Year just started, what were some of your favorite albums/songs that were released in 2015?

Kyler Daron: 2015 was a great year for new records. I have to say though, my favorite overall was probably Brandon Flowers’ new release, ‘The Desired Effect.” It’s beautiful. Such a fantastic collection of tunes.

MusicDash: Any exciting plans for the new year so far?

Kyler Daron: Well, I won’t reveal too much, but we’re back in the studio headed toward new material. Keep your eyes open! It should be an exciting year!

You can find Kyler Daron at:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/kylerdaronmusic

Twitter: www.twitter.com/kylerdaron

Instagram: www.instagram.com/kylerdaron

Web: www.kylerdaron.bandcamp.com

Article by Kaitlyn Midgett

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2831419

Interview: Kylie Odetta

Emerging Artists, News, Straight Outta Nashville

2nd December 2015

Here’s something that you probably don’t know about me — I get very defensive when people cover Adele. I subscribe to the belief that it is almost always a bad idea. I can think of only a handful of instances in which I’ve been proven wrong. Kylie Odetta is one of those instances. She took “Someone Like You,” a song that is so beautiful but is usually sung one specific way (exactly like Adele), and made it her own. Not only do I give her mad props for this, but I am so impressed with her vocally.

To balance things out so to speak, something that you might not know about Kylie is that she has one of those voices that would allow her to sing whatever genre she wanted. If she were to send any record label a demo of her singing any genre, they would believe that that genre was what she was meant to sing. I heard her live at The Sutler during a writer’s round, so naturally everything was stripped down. Kylie’s performance was just her and the piano (with the occasional accompaniment of the George Twins). They played a song that they cowrote together called “Stuck on Yellow” and it was both fabulous and witty. Overall, I was just so enamored by her talent. Her vocals reminded me of that of Christina Aguilera, and I would SO turn my chair for Kylie on The Voice.

Kylie had been on my radar since I started this project, but she wasn’t from Nashville, so I never contacted her and her team about setting up an interview. Right after I heard her cover, I messaged her manager. Kylie comes to Nashville a lot and performs around town, so I decided that now was the time to expand my reach. Sometimes things work out perfectly, because by the time I set up this interview, Kylie had just finished her new EP, which will be released early next year.

MusicDash: I know that you’re from South Carolina but you come to Nashville quite a lot. What has been your favorite performance here?

Kylie Odessa: My favorite performance so far was a writers round that I did with Moriah Domby and Eli Rhodes at Belcourt Taps. Moriah, Eli, and I actually met while playing a show in Asheville, NC and so it was really fun to re-connect with them for my first show in Nashville last year,

MusicDash: What drew you to Nashville?

Kylie Odetta: I first came to Nashville to record an EP when I was 13 years old and it was such an eye-opening experience. I had never been in a city that was so focused and centered around music. Since then I have been back many times over the years and I find something new that makes it more welcoming each time. I also know a lot of good friends and fellow musicians who live there so it’s nice to come and write – essentially the amount of things going on musically in this town is what drew me to it,

MusicDash: I know that your first release was in 2014 and you will have another EP released in 2016. How have these processes been different?

Kylie Odetta: I released an album in 2014, an EP in 2015, and now I will be releasing another EP in 2016! Each time I go into the studio to record something new, the process is different. For my first album, “Waiting Game” I was really focused on showing people something that was more true to who I was as an artist and would separate me from the “pop” world. We messed around with a lot of different vibes but everything still had an underlying theme. That followed into the next EP “Breaking Habits” where I went into the studio with an open mind to see where the music might lead me. That allowed for some of the songs to turn out fantastic but not necessarily in a style that I felt able to or comfortable with replicating in a live show. The purpose behind this upcoming EP is to break things down and focus on the piano, vocals, and lyrics. Now there is production behind some of them but it’s much less than in the past and everything has a more organic feel. I was hoping to capture the essence of what I do in a live setting and my heart for these songs.

MusicDash: Tell us a little bit about how you got your start in music!

Kylie Odetta: I began playing piano when I was 6 and I started writing songs when I was 8. the only answer that I have as to how it all came about is definitely God. I STILL don’t know how I am able to write these lyrics and melodies that come out of myself and onto the paper! I recorded my very first EP at age 12 in a family friend’s attic and fro there I went on to play at open mics and my school talent show and the county fair. This life is a journey and I certainly can attest to that – one thing continued to lead to another and my first EP got me to work with the producer for my 2nd EP and first music video at 13 which then allowed me to perform in a showcase where I met my now producer and made even more music. Those songs and the shows I had begun to play around town, getting my name out there, evolved into me getting the opportunity open up for bigger artists when they came in town for shows through my local radio station. And so on and so forth… hat’s the beginning of things I suppose but there’s a million little steps and trials and triumphs that I have gone through throughout the years.

 

MusicDash: Tell us about your affiliation with BMI.

Kylie Odetta: When it came time to decide which PRO to go with we did our research on them all and talked to a few fellow musicians and then settles on going with BMI! I’ve always been told that to own your publishing is an extremely helpful thing so that is why I created a “publishing company” with BMI.

MusicDash: What is your usual writing process like?

Kylie Odetta: Typically I will be sitting at the piano, practicing, and I will end up coming up with a little riff then following it through writing a song. Other times lyrics will hit me throughout the day and I will joy them down in my notes app on my phone and go back to it. The lyrics, the melody, and piano chords usually all come at the sam time, in the same sitting though.

MusicDash: Favorite spot in Nashville?

Kylie Odetta: I don’t remember the name of the restaurant but there’s this place that has cookie dough egg rolls for dessert and it is quite literally the most amazing bite you’ll ever put in your mouth. [editior’s note — Kylie was talking about Jackson’s Bar & Bistro]

MusicDash: What’s coming up next for you?

Kylie Odetta: I’ve been traveling a lot lately and playing a ton of shows so up next for me is the holidays and spending time with family! I’ll also be focusing on getting all of our ducks in a row with press, shooting a music video for the EP release, finalizing the edits of the songs, an promoting it. It’s set to come out either late January or early February.

You can find Kylie at:

Web: www.kylieodetta.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/Kylie-Odetta

YouTube: Kylie Odetta

Instagram: www.instagram.com/kylieodetta

Twitter: www.twitter.com/kylieodetta

Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/kylieodetta

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Final-0078

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Interview: Piper Slattery

News, Straight Outta Nashville

20th September 2015

I’m sitting across the table from Piper at a small, hole-in-the-wall coffee shop right off campus. We’re catching up from the long summer, people watching, and laughing like crazy. What I can tell you about Piper if you’ve never met her is that she cares and she listens to your dreams and what you have to say about them. A girl after my own heart, Piper gets excited about everything (she excitedly played her song “Third Wheelin'” for me at a school coffee shop the week she got the final mix back and asked me what I thought.) Her debut EP “Anywhere” was released in July and I can say with absolute confidence that all of the tracks on “Anywhere” show Piper at her best — with her personality shining through.

MusicDash: What drew you to Nashville?

Piper Slattery: I’ve always been drawn to country music, which is how I fell in love with songwriting. I love how Nashville is centered around music and how the people are so encouraging because they’ve been in the same boat. Back home, no one really understood what I wanted to pursue. It is so normal here and that normalcy gives you a sense of optimism. I actually moved to Nashville without ever visiting, but it’s the best decision I’ve ever made.

MusicDash: What is your favorite or most memorable performance thus far?

Piper Slattery: My most memorable performance was my EP release show in my hometown of Melbourne, FL. It was so cool because I got to share my music with the people who have been with me on this journey ever since I was little. They were so supportive and it meant a lot to me. I also got to play with a long time friend who I performed with in high school, so it was a big reunion.

MusicDash: I know that your debut EP “Anywhere” was released in July. What was that process like for you?

Piper Slattery: The process was cool because it happened really organically. I brought what I’d written back home to Nashville, continued to write while I was here, and was introduced to my producer through my voice coach. We just started recording in his apartment and I would record vocals in the closet. I would go to class during the day and work on mixes at night. It was a really comfortable environment but it also forced me to step outside my comfort zone. There were a lot of late nights, visits to the Twice Daily for coffee, and lots of laughs.

MusicDash: What inspires you?

Piper Slattery: I get really inspired by the way people, myself included, process life and handle their emotions. It is something I’ve always observed and channeled into my songwriting. I’m also very inspired by dogs. They constantly love unconditionally. They make something that is so hard for the human race seem like such a simple concept. I wouldn’t want to live in a world without dogs.

MusicDash: Last month, one of your tracks “[Insert Name Here]” was played on The Iceman Show, which broadcasts to 139 countries. What were you feeling when you heard yourself on the radio?

Piper Slattery: It was so cool!!!! It felt good to have someone else press the play button. It means the world to me that people are embracing my music.

MusicDash: When did you first start writing songs and how has your songwriting process changed since then?

Piper Slattery: I started writing songs when I was 14. I started off by writing about made up situations and transitioned into writing about my own life. I went from writing solely by myself to co-writing. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve experienced more and been able to write about broader topics. I’ve also learned to be more vulnerable, at least in my songwriting.

MusicDash: What are your ultimate goals?

Piper Slattery: My ultimate goal is to be able to wake up everyday and do what I love, which always has and always will be creating and playing music. I want to be able to serve people through my music and help them through situations, the same way that my favorite artists have done for me.

MusicDash: What’s next for you?

Piper Slattery: I’m going to be playing shows, creating content for YouTube, and co-writing with new people.

You can find Piper at:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/piperslatterymusic

Twitter: www.twitter.com/piperslattery

Instagram: www.instagram.com/pipsqweek

Article by Kaitlyn Midgett

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geddes

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Interview: Geddes The Sea

News, Straight Outta Nashville

13th September 2015

Sit down with Geddes the Sea for a little, and you’ll learn everything you need to know. Seriously, the guy is an open book — just read this interview. His honesty and his willingness to risk it all to get where he’s going makes Geddes the Sea a force to be reckoned with. I for one cannot wait to hear what else Geddes the Sea has up his sleeve.

MusicDash: What is the inspiration behind your stage name?

Geddes the Sea: That is a great question that actually has a long, complicated answer. But to sum it up, Geddes is my middle name. Geddes the Sea is my solo project, and I wanted a way to show that it is definitely a part of me and personal to me. The Sea comes from a quote that I love. When someone accused someone else that all of their good deeds and efforts to change things for the better would be nothing but a single drop in an endless ocean, the man responded “What is an ocean, but a multitude of drops?” That imagery has stuck with me, and personally I use it as an analogy for my fans. So yes, I refer to my fans as “The Sea” and I use it as part of my projects name to emphasize the fact that I would be nothing without the people who support me and my music.

MusicDash: What drew you to Nashville?

Geddes the Sea: Nashville drew me for a few reasons. Number one being that it’s the music capitol of the world. I’m from out west (Provo, Utah) and I had always wanted to move somewhere pretty far from where I grew up my whole life, just to experience something new. Nashville (being 1500 miles away) seemed like a great fit. Plus I love the warm weather and I love southern folk. And I have to say that I LOVE it here. So many talented people, whether it be musicians, producers to photographers and writers such as yourself. It is really nice to be able to be immersed in such a talented city.

MusicDash: Tell us a little about your musical background.

Geddes the Sea: The first instrument I learned was actually Viola. I started when I was 11 years old. To be honest, I really didn’t think of my music as something I should do until I turned about 16. By then I had taught myself 13 other instruments and I was composing a lot. The high school I attended was fortunate enough to have a really amazing orchestra conductor, and I was lucky enough to be a part of one of the best High School orchestras in the state. I also have a profound love for music theory. I guess you could say that I’m kind of a nerd when it comes to music theory.

MusicDash: For the first time in a long time, you’ve released new original music on Soundcloud. How was the response for “Holy Ghost?”

Geddes the Sea: Yes! That was so fun to release! The response has been amazing. Honestly, I didn’t think I would be able to get a big response for it. I had just moved out here to Nashville, and I kind of left my following from Utah behind (I had a completely different band back then). People were saying that they thought they were hearing it off the radio, which is a such a great compliment. And everybody was so kind to share it as well.

MusicDash: I know that you’re supposed to release an EP soon! When is it being released and what was your inspiration behind the sound of the EP as a whole?

Geddes the Sea: Things got a little crazy for me the last few months, and I was struggling hard to make ends meet, so music kind of took a backseat for a while. But I can say that I am working on more music right now, and I will be releasing the EP sometime in late fall. The inspiration for this new sound (all of Geddes the Sea is a new sound to me) would be the fact that I didn’t want to do something that sounded like the previous music I’ve released. I have really gotten into synthesizers and I’ve discovered that I really like writing stuff that sounds great in your car stereo, so you have that to look forward to.

MusicDash: If you could record any other genre, what would it be?

Geddes the Sea: I would definitely record R&B. I absolutely LOVe any R&B vocalist. There’s something about those silky smooth runs and soft falsettos that really draw my ear in when I listen. I also love the vocal harmonies that are included with that genre. And I love that the genre can be something as modern as Justin Timberlake’s “20/20 Vision” or something as classic sounding as Allen Stone’s “Unaware.”

MusicDash: What are your ultimate goals?

Geddes the Sea: That is a great question! I would really love to be a film scorer ultimately. But I also really love playing shows and writing lyrics and songs. And recently, I’ve found a passion for producing. There’s something so fun about taking a song that someone has given you, and turning it into something that sounds just like what was in their head. But to sum it all up, if I end up in basically anywhere in the creative side of the music business, I’ll be happy.

MusicDash: What’s next for you?

Geddes the Sea: Next I’m really working on getting this EP out. I also have a top secret album that I am working on (sssshh!). I’m actually really excited about this album. It’s been about two and a half years in the making, and it’s going to be epic. I’m also focusing on expanding my reach, and creating stuff that my current fans will enjoy and want to share. Something else I’d really like to do is make my music accessible to everyone who wants it. I have his a lot of rough patches financially, and I remember walking down the CD aisle at Walmart thinking “Man I really wish I could afford that.” I’d love for every person who really wants my music to have the opportunity to have it, whether they can pay as much as everyone else or not. That is why up to this point, everything that I’ve released has been free to download. However, I do want to be able to live off of music at some point, so I recognize that I can’t release everything for free. But if you want to support me and my music, there is a page on my website (http://www.geddesthesea.com/support/) that shows you a few different ways you can contribute.

You can find Geddes the Sea at:

Web: www.geddesthesea.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/geddesthesea

 

Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/geddesthesea

 

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Koa

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Interview: Koa

Emerging Artists, News, Straight Outta Nashville

8th September 2015

You may have seen Koa at one of their sold out shows or just heard of them. Each instrument that layers another is truly an incredible sound and you can tell what musicians have influenced them. Koa is bound to find fans in people who usually enjoy both fast paced songs slow love songs. Their unique sound is what makes them so special and different than most bands.

MusicDash: What is your favorite song to play live?

Conor Kelly: For me, if I had to pick, that song right now would probably be Maybe Next Time. That song is in every set that I write because I think it has the deepest groove and is one of our “hookier” songs if that makes any sense. Lately we do a really fun drum break where Will and Ryan (drummer and percussionist) get to go off and explore some different musical territory. Its a cool moment in the set for me where I can just admire the talent of this band. Chase also has this hypnotizing vocal that tells such a great story and I love the guitar in that song! Maybe Next Time has a lot of attitude and speaks to many emotions, so right now I would say that one is my favorite.

Chase Bader: For me it depends. An extremely exciting part for us is to watch songs come to life and grow through playing them all over. I really enjoy our song “Gemini.” It was my first approach at a more narrative song and it’s one we love closing with. The groove and especially the sax lick are addictive!

MusicDash: What inspired you to make a band?

Conor Kelly: Well, Chase and I first met in fifth grade, so I would say our musical connection and him as a writer and singer was my original inspiration for starting this band. The short story is that for the better part of 10 years we have developed a friendship that has been nurtured so deeply through music. Playing and writing songs was never any sort of hobby or something we did to pass the time, writing songs was our life. So when it came time to go to make a move, we were either going to let playing together fizzle out, or make it really count and actually pursue it as a career. Two years later, here we are!

Chase Bader: yeah Conor and I have been friends for a long time and pretty much since the beginning of when we started hanging out we talked about doing what we’re doing now. We always envisioned writing and creating music that carried the emotion we both felt from our favorite bands. We learned how to write and record through just doing it ourselves and with the help of friends along the way. Ultimately, the inspiration came from wanting to create something that spoke to others.

MusicDash: When you write a song, what usually inspires you?

Conor Kelly: For me, the essence of a good song is the way it can emotionally move you. It is truly an amazing thing the way a song is able to connect with you on a deeper than surface level. For me, that is the inspiration enough! Being able to make someone truly feel something great with a song is everything I hope to accomplish in songwriting. Chase has a really special gift of being able to do that through his writing, so as a co-writer, I feel that I have a unique role in this process being able to listen to the original draft of the song (for the most part) unbiasedly and ask myself, what can I add to this song that really “adds to this song”? Songwriting itself is always inspiration enough for me.   

Chase Bader: Agreed. A good test for us is removing all the instruments and if the song fundamentally with music and lyrics can work with a solitary vocal and an acoustic guitar or piano then you know the song has a depth that carries something special. Writing from experience is something I do constantly because you write best from what you know. That’s how I think we can connect as a band. You use your experiences to help find a similarity between others and this can allow the writer to talk about something that may have never happened to them before.

MusicDash: Where do you see yourselves in a few years?

Conor Kelly: I see us being the biggest band in the world! No joke! I really believe in our music and I really believe in our amazing team and band. I am so inspired by the rest of the guys and am constantly trying to learn from them and impress them. I also see our first record out there done the right way, and people hopefully digging it, as well as being on the road with bands like Moon Taxi, Widespread Panic, Tedeschi Trucks Band, and JJ Grey and Mofro! We work really really hard and put so much of ourselves into our songs, so in the end I want to accomplish nothing more then having a real emotional connection with our audience. So for me whatever that looks like, I hope that is where I end up!

Chase Bader: Haha yeah we really have big goals. We believe in our music and each other and we couldn’t do anything else. You find something you understand beyond everything else and you work at it. We’re working on developing a career out of this to provide an amazing experience for the people out there who enjoy what we do. It’s all about the journey for us!

MusicDash: What was your favorite Nashville show?

Conor Kelly: Definitely our last show at Exit In! We had an amazing audience and I feel like the band was performing really well that night. We actually ended up tracking that set and listening back to those songs has been really cool! It definitely was a night to remember.

Chase Bader: I loved Exit In as well. It was a huge moment for as a band. It cemented our progress as musicians to where we had started to where we were at that moment in time. Overall though, we’ve loved touring. Learning to interact with audiences different from Nashville and learning to play to huge crowds has been a complete joy.

MusicDash: What was the writing process for ‘Cool It Down’ like?

Chase Bader: “Cool it Down” was a song I wrote almost three years ago now originally. I had been going back and forth about the idea of the what I wanted in my life and how I was living at the time. At that point I was writing a lot of music by myself, playing with different bands, but I was kind of lost trying to find my voice as a musician and writer. “Cool it Down” was the beginning of a phase of writing that thematically spawned the early versions of much of Koa’s core catalog. I think back to those original days and playing cool it down at open mic nights I used to do in my hometown of Birmingham and I smile because it’s incredible where a song can take you.

 

You can find Koa at:

Web: www.thisiskoa.com/

Facebook: www.facebook.com/thisiskoa

YouTube: Koa

Instagram: www.instagram.com/thisiskoa

Twitter: www.twitter.com/thisiskoa

 

Interview by Megan Bennett

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the vespers

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Interview: The Vespers

News, Straight Outta Nashville

30th August 2015

The first time that I heard The Vespers was at my very first Noah Gundersen concert. I went to this concert not only to hear my favorite album of all time, Ledges, performed live, but also to write about it for an online blog. Naturally I had my phone out for taking notes and admittedly texting. But when The Vespers came on stage, I stopped what I was doing and was completely enamored by their performance. After the first song I slipped my phone back into my purse and didn’t touch it for the rest of the evening. I remembered everything without even having to take notes.

This is what’s so special to me about The Vespers — They’re refreshing and captivating in every single way. Lyrically, vocally, performance-wise: you name it, The Vespers have it. There truly isn’t a band quite like The Vespers.

I had the opportunity to talk to the band’s percussionist Taylor Jones and I am honored that the band took the time to be a part of this project.

MusicDash: What captivated you about Nashville?

Taylor Jones: The fact that there is so much world class talent here. It’s hard to believe it sometimes, but we live in a town where a great deal of the most heard music in the world gets recorded. That motivates us to work harder to keep up with our friends around us.

MusicDash: What is your favorite or most memorable performance in Nashville?

Taylor Jones: The first time we played Belcourt Theatre as a young band. We had just released our 1st album that day & sold the theatre out that night. It was quite surreal for us.

MusicDash: How did you all meet and start making music?

Taylor Jones: We met through a mutual friend then started playing together about a year later. The pairing was originally just gonna be for one show, but then it evolved from there.

MusicDash: What was the inspiration behind your song “Sisters and Brothers?”

Taylor Jones: Its inspired by what we’ve learned from traveling together over the last 5 years. That we need to take care of each other while we’re all still alive & working together because all that can change in an instant.

MusicDash: How has your sound changed throughout your years as a band?

Taylor Jones: It’s changed as we’ve changed. We’re constantly getting into different artists & sounds & that leads us to write differently. We’re getting older too which changes the subject matter as well.

MusicDash: What was it like working with Grammy nominated producer Paul Moak? How did that connection come about?

Taylor Jones: Paul is great. He is all about collaboration and authenticity in recording and we loved that about him. He made that record exceed all of our expectations in the band. We met him through another mutual friend that thought it would be a good pairing.

MusicDash: You’ve just been added to the lineup for Nashville’s own Live on the Green with some big names like Passion Pit and Ben Folds. What are your expectations?

Taylor Jones: Our expectations of ourselves are to go out there and deliver the best on stage product that we can. We expect there to be a lot of people in attendance because of the great lineup, so we’re gonna try to be that extra surprise that no one saw coming.

MusicDash: What’s next for you?

Taylor Jones: We’re going to write another full length album and continue to tour as much as we can. We’d love to open for some other artists too if the right situation came up.

You can find The Vespers at:

Web: www.thevespersband.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/TheVespers

YouTube: www.youtube.com/user/TheVespersOfficial

Instagram: www.instagram.com/thevespers

Twitter: www.twitter.com/thevespers

Interview by Kaitlyn Midgett

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taylor edwards

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Interview: Taylor Edwards

Editors Choice, Emerging Artists, Straight Outta Nashville

13th August 2015

I could fill a couple of pages with everything that’s cool about Taylor Edwards. Her Sugarland cover of “Little Miss” was in an episode of the hit show “Hart of Dixie.” She covered T. Swift’s “Shake It Off” the day after it was released (complete with a string player). And, most recently, she’s shared the stage with both Meghan Trainor and Hunter Hayes. From the sound of things, this is only the beginning.

Personally I have such an admiration for T since I aspire to work in the music business. Every video that she puts out, every show that she self-promotes, everything that Taylor does is well thought out and executed in a way that ensures the best results. I know that this kind of talent and understanding will take her far.

MusicDash: What drew you to Nashville?

Taylor Edwards: I absolutely LOVE country music… so I think that was the initial draw. As I made more trips before actually moving to attend Belmont University, I started to see how the town nurtured its songwriters and that became a huge LOVE factor to me. Songwriting is my foundation, so when I realized that aspect of the city… I knew I had found a new home.

MusicDash: What is your favorite or most memorable performance in Nashville?

Taylor Edwards: My favorite performance in Nashville actually happened recently. This past May I won the Grammy U Songwriter’s Showdown and one of the prizes was to perform at the Nashville Grammy Block Party. I opened for LeAnn Womack, Hunter Hayes, and Meghan Trainor. It’s definitely the most star studded bill I’ve been a part of and it was such an amazing opportunity for an up and coming artist like myself.

MusicDash: What is your favorite song that you’ve ever written?

Taylor Edwards: HARDEST QUESTION OF ALL TIME. Seriously though. This honestly changes on a daily basis because I feel like my “new favorite song” is always the last on I wrote. I do have a song that I wrote about my 4 year old sister that can get me pretty choked up when I perform it. The song is called “Young at Heart” and it’s about having to be so far apart… both in age and in distance. Even if that song never sees the light of day (release wise), it will always be a special one.

MusicDash: Tell us a little about your musical background. When did you realize that you wanted to be a singer and songwriter?

Taylor Edwards: Growing up, I think I was involved in almost every elementary and middle school play or musical. I loved Britney Spears when I was little and was always caught singing along with Shania Twain when my Dad would play her CD for me in the car. Music is something I’ve always innately had in me, but it wasn’t until the summer before my freshmen year of high school that I picked up a guitar and taught myself chords from YouTube tutorials. When I learned my way around the guitar, songwriting just kind of came naturally. It wasn’t anything I had to force myself to do or learn. I’m lucky that I figured out that creative outlet when I was 15 because it sure helped make high school and the drama that comes along with being a teenager (who’d rather play shows and make YouTube videos in her bedroom and NOT go to parties) a little bit easier.

MusicDash: I’ve known you from your YouTube days when it used to be just you in your room with a guitar. Do you think that your path would be different had you not joined YouTube?

Taylor Edwards: I owe a lot to YouTube and the people who have become a fan of my music through YouTube. Social media is such a game changer for artists these days and I feel really lucky that I’m in a generation of artists that can use it as a tool. It’s allowed me to create a solid fan base and reach people I wouldn’t have been able to reach outside the walls of my bedroom. I absolutely love live shows, but it’s such a cool thing that you can spend 3 minutes recording a video and instantly share it with millions of people.

MusicDash: What’s the best advice you’ve ever gotten by somebody in the industry?

Taylor Edwards: I had dinner with a really good friend of mine who works in the industry a few weeks ago and she said something that really stuck with me. We were talking about how it can be so easy to start comparing yourself and your career to other people. You worry about what “this person” is doing, or “that person” and before you know it, you’ve completely lost sight of your own aspirations. She said “Y, you’ve got to put your blinders on and do what you do best.” I think that’s been my favorite advice since moving to town. It’s something everyone struggles with — human nature — and I think it’s important to realize that not everyone’s plot line is supposed to be played out the same.

MusicDash: What are your ultimate goals?

Taylor Edwards: Right now, my biggest goal would be to put out a really solid first record — hopefully within the next couple of years. I’ve spent the last 3 years trying to hone in on that sound and vibe I want to portray as an artist and I think within the last 10 or so months, I’m finally onto something. I’m also soooo antsy to tour. My dream tour would be with Sugarland… (I keep crossing my fingers that they’ll make another record. HA!) I’m ready to make music my big girl, real deal, do-it-everyday job. That is the biggest goal right now. Maybe win a CMA or a Grammy or something too. That would be cool. 😉

MusicDash: What’s next for you?

Taylor Edwards: WELL… I’ll be a senior this year at Belmont and I’m actually doing my fall semester in Los Angeles so I’m excited to see what’s musically in store for me out there. I’ll continue to write, write, write  and play, play, play. I’ve been in the studio working on some demos of some songs I’m really excited about right now and those will pop up on my Soundcloud within the next few months for fans to get a taste of. I’ve got some fun YouTube videos that I’m excited to see come to life too! I might be leaving my Nashville home for a little bit, but there will be no shortage or music or cool content.

You can find Taylor Edwards at:

Web: www.tayloredwardsmusic.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/tayloredwardsmusic

YouTube: Taylor Edwards

Instagram: www.instagram.com/tayloredwards

Twitter: www.twitter.com/tayloredwards

Soundcloud: www.soundcloud.com/tayloredwardsmusic

Article by Kaitlyn Midgett

 

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Interview: Betsy Lane

Editors Choice, Straight Outta Nashville

5th August 2015

I’ve been a Betsy Lane fan since my freshman year of college. Through a strange series of events, I found out about her music on Tumblr, saw a video of her “freaking out” about how well her first EP was doing in the UK, and then, after recognizing one of Belmont’s illustrious fountains, realized that *SURPRISE* she goes to my school. She also was friends with my friends and lived in the same building as I did. Our paths were bound to cross eventually. Since then, Betsy and I have edited each other’s poems and short stories in class and attended the same birthday parties.

I can tell you for certain that Betsy is just as lovely as her fans make her out to be. Seeing her fans interact with her and send her presents, letters, and selfies warms my heart. I was a Betsy Lane fan before I even knew her and I think that says a lot about her talent. Her beautiful heart and soul shines through her lyrics. Her presence in the industry is a blessing in and of itself. The way that she treats her fans and the way that they relate to her is an even bigger blessing. And just like the strawberry wine she sings about in her song “What About 18,” Betsy Lane improves with age.

MusicDash: I know that you’re a native, but what do you love most about Nashville?

Betsy Lane: I love the feeling that Nashville gives me. I love to travel, but when I come home there’s nothing like looking over and seeing that skyline. Nashville kind of gives me ‘first date feelings’ — I never know what to expect from this beautiful city, but I know it’s going to be something I’ll remember forever.

MusicDash: What is your favorite or most memorable performance in Nashville?

Betsy Lane: Summer of 2014, I played a benefit concert at the famous Pancake Pantry for Preston Taylor Ministries. It was so cool — they moved most of the tables and had a stage set up. They decided to call it “Pickin’ at the Pantry.” I don’t think I ever even dreamed of playing the pantry, but if anyone knows me (or follows me in Instagram), they know that I practically live on their Swiss Chocolate Chip Pancakes because my love language is breakfast food.

MusicDash: What is your favorite song that you’ve ever written?

Betsy Lane: Oh, I hate this question! It’s so tough because every song that I write is for a specific reason — to heal, to love, to change things, to figure out situations, etc. The most personal one I’ve written is “What About 18.” That song just holds a special place in my heart because when I wrote it, I was in a place in my life where I was just terrified. I didn’t know what came next, and I didn’t want to eventually leave the present behind so I sat down with my guitar and wrote about being eighteen, and holding onto it because I couldn’t anymore.

MusicDash: Your EP did very well in the UK. What do you think helped you reach that success?

Betsy Lane: It’s funny, actually! I met two girls through Taylor Swift in Nashville one summer and they happened to be from the UK. About five months after I met them, my first EP released (2013) and they both tweeted about it and all of the sudden it was blowing up… I was getting tweets from London, Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, etc. and then they all started tweeting me pictures like “Betsy, you’re at #23 on the Country Charts!” and I was just shocked, really. I couldn’t focus in class at all that week (haha!) and I knew I needed to make it to the UK ASAP, so I toured there the following summer with my incredibly talented friend Laura Zocca who is from there. On tour I got to meet a ton of people who have helped make my dreams possible and now I call them all friends because I got to hug them and thank them for changing my life.

MusicDash: It seems like you’ve been doing more cowrites over the past couple of months or so. If you could cowrite a song with anybody who would it be?

Betsy Lane: Gaaahhh, anyone?! This answer changes daily, trust me. Right now I would definitely say Nicolle Galyon, Natalie Hemby, or Hillary Lindsey. Also to sit in a co-write with Taylor Swift just to see how her brain works would be really inspiring.

MusicDash: You recently went to the UK and had a meet-up. How was it reconnecting with your fans from over there that give you so much support?

Betsy Lane: I was studying abroad in London and so while I was there, I decided to have a meet-up with Laura, the girl I toured with last summer. That night in London is one that I will always remember. We basically took over the top floor of Tottenham Court Starbucks and sat in a giant circle and just hung out. I love hanging with fans because it gives me a chance to get to know them and we all become friends, and I know the next time I’m in London, I can count on them giving me a giant hug because that’s what friends do. I wanted to be with them for hours because it is so rewarding to be around positive people who all love the same thing. Ugh, they’re great. I miss them all.

MusicDash: What are your ultimate goals?

Betsy Lane: Ultimately, I just want to make an impact on people’s lives with music. If that means singing my songs to arenas of people, then that’s what it means, but if it means writing songs for other artists, then I would love to do that too. I want to change the face of country music and I’ll so that however I can. (Also, adding Opry Debut to that list never hurts.)

MusicDash: What’s next for you?

Betsy Lane: I’ve been working really hard writing, working on demos, and meeting with people to help push my career forward. I try not to have tunnel vision when it comes to my career because if I do that, I feel like I’ll miss all the opportunities in between. Honestly, I can make a whole list of goals and “what’s next” but ultimately what happens, is going to happen. I’m working hard and whatever comes my way, I’ll be happy. As long as I’m moving forward, I think I’m going in the right direction.

Web: betsylanemusic.com

Facebook: facebook.com/betsylanemusic

Youtube: www.youtube.com/user/betsylanemusic

Instagram: instagram.com/betsylane

Twitter: twitter.com/betsylanemusic

Article by Kaitlyn Midgett

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Photo source : https://www.facebook.com/raphaellutherofficial

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Our Exclusive Interview with Raphael Luther

Editors Choice, Emerging Artists, Folk, Singer/Songwriter

25th June 2015

Music Dash ExclusiveRecently, I had the chance to interview Singer-Songwriter Raphael Luther about his EP ‘Us and Them‘. It consists of four songs including the track ‘Us and Them‘ which is accompanied by a beautiful music video – available on Youtube.

Check out the interview below!

What or who was your main inspiration to create this EP?

When you spend somoHoVykxUe time in a big city like London, especially as a young artist, you don’t have other choices than doing something to occupy your mind as the dynamism and energy of the city doesn’t really give you any break. Some people find busy jobs, some simply watch TV, for me the only way I found to occupy myself with satisfaction is by playing the guitar and writing tunes. There’s something very rewarding in the creative process that nothing else can give you: a true sense of achievement and “letting things out”. What inspired me for this EP was the process of discovering myself as a young adult and the battles that it takes (past, love, life) and some other things that came to me while I was trying to figure it all out (spirituality, traveling, letting things go). Also, the english weather did influence the mood of this EP.

What is your favorite song off this EP?

I think “Us and Them” is the most unusual and orignial song of this EP and that’s probably why it’s my favorite. The track “Your turn” is also very special one for me, co-written with a very special person. Actually it’s hard to tell between the two.

How would you describe this EP?

This EP is completely homemade (recorded in two different bedrooms across London). So it didn’t have any professional producers involved. I’d say it’s an exploration of what I’m capable to create as I’m still crafting my sound. Concerning the production, I wanted to try something half electronic / half organic mainly because my influences are from both areas (John Mayer, James Blake, Ben Howard). Electronic mainly through the drum beats and organic with the sweetness and folkiness of the acoustic guitar. I’d describe it as a crossover between Atmospheric / Folk and electronic music.

Are there certain moments where you get really inspired to write songs?

Inspiration and creativity are such weird and unpredictable things. I think it’s a matter of being 100% connected to what you feel at the moment. Then, at some point, you’ll feel when the cup is full with an urgent need to pour things out on a piece of paper. At least that’s how it works for me. As I said before it’s totally unpredictable. And that’s what excites me about creativity, there are no boring routines.

Do you play any other instruments besides the guitar?

I actually learned how to play the piano before the guitar when I was very young, around 8. I still write and perform with a keyboard sometimes. Both instruments complement each other so well. I play a little bit of bass and drums as well, when I’m bored.

What other instruments would you like to play?

I’d love to be able to play the citar. It’s an instrument that always fascinated me but I never understood how it worked. It’s completely different from all other music tool I tried.

I understand that you are doing small gigs now. Would you rather play in small venues or larger venues? Why?

I play small venues because I don’t have any other options at the moment. Without management it’s hard to knock the door of bigger places because they wouldn’t take you seriously. That’s the reason why I’m seeking management at the moment and then hopefully I’ll have the opportunity to play bigger gigs in the future. This is one of my dream actually.

What is your favorite song11119524_510422285771489_993387991658010771_o to perform live?

I love performing “Us and Them” because it instantly places the room in a weird mood and it feels like the crowd doesn’t really understand this music but still feel it…  I love this kind of situtations! I always want to surprise the listener live, no matter what.

 Are there any new music or upcoming shows that your listeners can expect?

We just filmed two live videos with a full band in the studio. This should be released in July 2015 on Youtube. I’m planning to record a new EP for 2016 but I want to work with a producer this time. So if there’s any talented producer reading this interview, please do get in touch! Concerning the shows, I play at the Bedroom bar on the 7th July, the Lucky Pig on the 14th July and the awesome Finsbury on the 20th July opening for my good friend U.R.I. All the gigs are taking place in London.

What’s next for you? Where do you see yourself in the years to come?

I want to travel and play my music as much as I can. I know it sounds cliché but after spending four years in the madness that is London, it feels like I need to open my perspectives and get some new inspirations from other places because, at the moment, I’m running out of ideas. I’m actually planning to go to South Africa in 2016 to travel and tour the country for about three months with just a guitar and a van. Concerning the professional career, I hope to collaborate with as much musicians as I can because music is all about sharing experiences and knowledge with each other in order to grow a little bit more everyday as an artist and a person. Hopefully falling in love too.

Article by Cristal Faith Lim

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