Rachel Schumacher~ Q&A!!!

1. Hi Rachel, can you tell us all a little bit about yourself before you became a country artist? I grew up in St. Louis Missouri and lived in Missouri my entire life until this past year. Growing up I played lots of sports, focusing more on cheerleading and dance when I got to high school. I have always loved performing and being the center of attention! I took piano lessons for a few years and then taught myself guitar. That then grew into singing and songwriting. In high school I had a job working at a doggy daycare, so I decided to pursue a veterinary path in college. I went to the University of Missouri and majored in Animal Science. I loved it at first, but after working as a vet assistant for a few years I felt very burnt out. I then decided to focus more on my music, which had been more of a side hobby my whole life. I got a new job working at a local concert venue and started performing at the bars in town.

2. What made you want a career in country music? Country music has been my favorite genre of music for a long time. I think it stemmed from listening to Taylor Swift’s early albums and then being introduced to Dolly Parton when I saw her on “Hannah Montana.” I love how country music is so diverse. Sometimes it’s funny, sometimes it’s sad, but it usually tells a great story.

3. Who are some of your musical icons? Taylor Swift, Dolly Parton, Miley Cyrus, Reba, Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood

4. What is the background story behind your latest single “Maybe I’m Crazy?” I wrote it a few years ago when I decided that I really wanted to pursue music as an actual career. I felt like everyone was giving me a side eye and acting like I was crazy for wanting to give it a shot. I also was aware that pursuing a dream like this is really difficult so maybe I was a little crazy. It’s better to just embrace it and make a song out of it.

5. How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words? Way too honest!

6. What is your recording process like when making and creating new music? I usually start by recording a worktape on my phone of me singing and playing the guitar chords to a song I wrote. I then send that recording as well as the lyrics to my producers and they get going doing the instruments. We pay professional studio musicians to record the guitar, drums, piano, bass, or whatever we need for that specific track. After that, I go into the studio and do the vocals. I also usually have someone else singing background harmonies to give it a little something more. It’s very subtle, but makes a huge difference in the long run.The producers then mix and master everything and make it sound amazing. They’re honestly doing way more of the work than I am.

7. What are a few of your favorite venues to play live at? In Nashville I love to play at Casa Rosa and Jason Aldean’s. In Missouri I love “The Honkytonk Stl” and “NashVegas Honky Tonk” in Columbia.

8. What is one of your favorite quotes? “You’ll never do a whole lot unless you’re brave enough to try.” -Dolly Parton

9. Is there anything else you would like to share? I just got done recording a new song that I’m hoping to have out around the end of 2022 or early 2023!

Rachel Schumacher~ Artist Spotlight!!!

Country singer/songwriter Rachel Schumacher is from St. Louis, Missouri and is 22 years old. She moved to Nashville in 2022 to pursue her dreams in the country music scene, after graduating with a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Missouri. 

Her current job right is performing, mainly on Broadway in Nashville, however, she also travels back to her home state to play shows and do some private events. When Schumacher is not singing she loves walking her dog, shopping and taking lots of naps. 

Schumacher’s brand-new single “Maybe I’m Crazy,” came out this year and is available on both Spotify and Apple Music. If you would like to find out more about up-and-coming country artist Rachel Schumacher then please go take a look at her Instagram (link) down below. 

Social Media: 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rachel_schumacher/?hl=en

Drew Fish Band~ QA!!!

• Hello Drew, can you tell us all about yourself before you became a country musician? 

        I’ve played instruments and sang since I can remember and the band formed when I was in high school. Most of hobbies from then are still my hobbies now. I’m a huge fan of the outdoors. I enjoy being outside whether it is hunting, hiking, fishing, riding ATVs, boating, scuba diving, biking… When I have time off, it’s a safe bet that I’m spending time in the wilderness.

• Who are some of your musical icons?

        I grew up listening to a wide variety of music, everything from Elvis Presley to Blink 182, Patsy Cline to Queen, and Roy Rogers to Frank Sinatra. I have a lot of respect for people who really created their own sound. There are so many iconic country artists from the 80s and 90s that when a song comes on, you know exactly who the artist is even if you haven’t heard the song before. There are too many amazing artists to name them all, but two of my favorites are Keith Whitley and Randy Travis.

• What made you decide to have a career in country music?

        Cory Morrow invited our family out to a show and asked me if I wanted to get up on stage and play “Drink One More Round” with him. I had played songs in front of a person here and there before, but had never been on a stage or played for a crowd. The rush that I got from being on stage was something that I had never experienced before. That sparked me finding a couple of friends from high school that played drums and bass and the Drew Fish Band was born.

• What is the background story behind your latest single “Friday Beers?” 

        There is an Instagram account called @Friday.beers that I have followed for a couple of years. I was sitting down with Kyle Level and David Banning one day to write and threw the idea out to make a theme song for their page. I like cracking a cold beer open on a Friday and I think that most of our fans do too. After we wrote the song, I sent it to my brother to get his opinion on it and he happened to know one of the guys who started the page. He got us in contact, they loved the song, so we teamed up with them for the release.

• How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words?

        Fun, positive, good timing, sincere

• What are a few of your favorite venues to play at?

        I was born and raised in Austin and hometown shows are always special. I went to Stubb’s to see a bunch of shows growing up. We’ve had every one of our album release parties there and we usually have my birthday show there. Coupland Dance Hall and Gruene Hall are also places that I grew up going to and will always bring back those memories. One of the coolest venues that I can think of is Old Saloon in Emigrant, MT. It’s a little place that’s 120 years old sitting just north of Yellowstone National Park in Paradise Valley. Standing on the outdoor stage and looking at the mountains around you is pretty incredible.

• What is your recording process like when creating and making new music?

        Everything comes down to the song. We are currently working on a new record and in the process of narrowing down songs and writing new ones right now. It’s all about finding the right songs that represent you as an artist, fit your sound, and compliment the record. Just because a song is a great song, doesn’t mean it’s the right song for you as an artist and just because a song works for you as an artist, doesn’t mean it’s the right song for a certain record. We start the recording process by looking at what songs we already have written, figuring out which of those songs will work for the album, and then writing what is missing.

• What is one of your favorite quotes?

        “What did you do today to set you up for tomorrow?” I’m not sure where it came from, but it has been one that has stayed with me for years. I believe that the only way that you can create success (whatever that success may be for you), is to work towards it every day and actively pursue your goal.

• Is there anything else you would like to share?

        We do a lot of work with military based charities and released a song called ’Stories Left Untold’ this past Memorial Day Weekend. 100% of the revenue from that song through the end of the year is going to Special Forces Charitable Trust to support our country’s Heroes. We have six Special Operations veterans in the video, one of whom was shot in the head in 2011 serving our country in Afghanistan. His treatments are not covered by the VA, so he has had to rely on donations and assistance from organizations like Special Forces Charitable Trust to recover from his injuries. Watch the video, stream the song, and donate if you can to support those who have dedicated their lives to preserving our freedoms.

Drew Fish Band~ Artist Spotlight!

When Drew Fish was a sophomore in high school, he was asked to play by talented Texas singer/songwriter Cory Morrow. There were almost 1,000 fans that gathered for Morrow’s and Tyler’s Texas show. Backstage, before the show started, Fish played a few songs for Morrow, who later surprised Fish by asking him to join him to sing on the stage with him. When Fish went off the stage everything changed for him.

Fish thought it was neat to get a band together, that was the moment he knew he wanted to have a career in music. He started a band and he and his pals started playing through high school and college, getting gigs at fraternity and sorority parties while in college and traveling throughout Texas and neighboring to play music for people who quickly became fans after seeing their high energy, and down to earth show. 

After college, Fish’s mom and dad, both of who came from musical backgrounds, told him he had to get a job. He and his band talked it over and decided they wanted music to be their career, so they  made their first album, which Fish describes as having “a rough and real,” sound. Many people enjoyed it, more dates came along too, and a second album, which was somewhat smoother and more poetic, arrived. Along with it came lot of interest in the band for bookings, radio and television. Having just put out his third record, produced by five-time Grammy winner Adam Odor (known for his work with the Dixie Chicks, Pat Green and the Randy Rogers Band), Fish is well on his way into that career in music. He wrote all the songs for “Wishful Drinkin,” which came out in 2020. The music has become more traditional with a honky tonk sound. 

The sing/songwriter co-wrote many of the songs with popular songwriters Tommy Conners (“The Last Ten Years (Superman)” by Kenny Rogers; “Last Of A Dying Breed” by Neil McCoy), Roger Brown (“She Gets That Way” by Kenny Chesney; “We Must Be Loving Right” by George Strait and Barbara Streisand_ and Nashville Songwriters’ Hall of Fame member Byron Hill (Fool Hearted Memory” by George Strait; “Nothin’ On But The Radio” by Gary Allan). 

Fish wanted to grow the music he had been doing, and he thought this new record shows growth. He also wanted songs that sounded like him, but not for them to be alike. He thinks they came up with some terrific songs, and some great honky tonk tracks, and he was very excited for everyone to hear the album. 

Fish explains one of the things that made a big difference for this album is that he has continued to grow throughout his musical career as a singer, entertainer and songwriter. Also, he put a lot of time into pre-production before he, Odor and the musicians went into the studio to  record.

Fish shares also that “the studio was a blast.” They were throwing ideas out and trying different things. The band was willing to go out on a wing to try different things, and the results are just what Fish was hoping for. 

“Lone Star Saturday Night,” was a wonderful example of what Fish was showcasing when he went in to record, a song he considers to be true country. It’s a honky tonk song with a driving rhythm that gets listeners in the mood to party. “Better Place,” was the first single released to radio and Fish’s second to go to number 1 on Texas Regional Radio Report. Bryan and Fish wrote it in about 30 minutes and right after thought it should come out first because it was such a positive message song, something they thought people would like hearing in this time of hardships. Fish is also proud of “Every Damn Time,” the first waltz song he recorded. It was also a duet with Pam Tillis, which he says he still cannot believe what happened. “High Rolling Home,” a song inspired by Willie Nelson and “On The Road Again.” Listen carefully and you will hear references to Honeysuckle Rose, and the Outlaws and guitar riffs that sound much like those you might hear from Nelson too. 

In 2022, Fish and his band put out a brand-new song “Friday Beers,” and it is available on both Spotify and Apple Music. If you would like to find out more about the Drew Fish band then check out their website (https://drewfish.com/).

Social Media Accounts: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drewfishband/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/drewfishband/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/drewfishband/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/drewfishban

Matthew Wayne~ Q&A!!

  1. Hello, can you tell us all a little bit about yourself before you became a country musician? I’ve been playing guitar and piano since the age of 5 and the first real song I learned on piano was a country song called Rebecca Lynn by Bryan White.So I guess you could say I’ve always played country music. I was side man in a country group in 2008-2013. 2013 I started doing more pop and rnb. 2021 I was inspired to get back to the country music I loved.
  2. Who are some of your musical icons? Stevie Wonder, Garth Brooks, George Strait, John Coltrane, Ryan Adams, Bob Dylan and The Beatles
  3. What made you want a career in country music? It’s just the music that feels right. Great songwriting and great storytelling.
  4. What is the background story behind your brand-new single “Stronger Than She Looks?” Sometimes you meet a girl that you just can’t hold on to. A wild one. 
  5. How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words?  authentic heartfelt meaningful
  6. What are a few of your favorite venues to play at?  The American Gardens Theatre at EPCOT, St Augustine Amphitheatre, The Bijou Theater, The Green Valley Ranch
  7. What is your recording process when creating and making new music? Putting together one of Nashville’s top session groups, in a top studio. Doing a lot of prep work before entering the room. That’s the most important part. Working with a vocal coach, practicing the songs, making sure I like the key and tempo. That’s most of the battle right there.
  8. What is one of your favorite quotes? Luck is the moment of hardwork meeting opportunity.
  9. Is there anything else you would like to share?  New music will be out in September! Keep an eye out at @matthewwayne on instagram!

Matt Wayne~ Artist Spotlight!!!

Matthew Wayne is a country musician that is from Florida. Wayne has been a professionally singer since the age of 19. He started playing the guitar and piano at the young age of 10 with no problem at all.

Wayne has gone on tour with acts such as The Avett Brothers, Ryan Cabrera, members of *NSYNC and Boyz II Men and many others. He grew up listening to country music with his parents and it also brought him full circle to putting out his own country music today.

Wayne latest EP “Stronger Than She Looks,” is out now with two new brand-new singles “Stronger Than She Looks,” and “You Only Miss When It’s Rainin.” If you would like to find out more about the talented Matthew Wayne then check out his website at (https://www.matthewwaynemusic.com).

Torrey McDowell~ Q&A!!!

  1. Hello Torrey, can you tell us all a little bit about yourself before you became a country singer?
    Before moving to Nashville to pursue music, I lived in Georgia and worked in higher education. I loved having the opportunity to impact students and advocate for their needs, but I got burnt out from it. I was already writing in Georgia and working on my guitar skills. During that time, I knew I wanted to transition to working in the music business industry in addition to working on my own music. I applied for jobs in this industry for two years before something finally worked out. The pandemic really impacted this as many companies put a hold on their open positions.
  2. What made you want a career in country music?
    Music has always been the biggest part of my life. I was always in choir through high school and then went on to study music in college on a vocal scholarship. I lost a lot of my passion for it while in my undergrad due to some personal experiences that really stole my confidence and the joy music provided me. Once I finally remembered who I was, that joy and drive finally started to return. That is when I dedicated two years to job searching, writing, and developing my craft.
  3. Who are some of your musical icons?
    I grew up on The Chicks, Shania Twain, Faith Hill, and Stevie Nicks which started my love of music. I still love them all but have expanded on genres and styles. I love JoJo Levesque, Jennifer Hudson, Kelsea Ballerini, Giveon, Mitchell Tenpenny, Teddy Swims, and so much more!
  4. What is the background story behind your brand-new single “Outloud?” 
    ‘Outloud’ tells the personal story of learning to give yourself permission to love who you love regardless of what others may think. This is something I have personally experienced and worked hard to form into a story with my co-writers Caroline McGowan and Kipper Lee Linville. We dug deep into the emotions I felt as well as those that others may feel in these situations. This type of experience applies to any person who is in a consenting relationship that others pass judgement on. Kipper and Caroline understood this, and I am so proud of what we’ve created together!
  5. What is your recording process like when making and creating new music?
    Once the lyrics were completed and the vibe was decided on with my co-writers, I met with my producer, Christian Harger, to develop the tracks. First, I recorded scratch vocals to send to the instrumentalists to use as a placeholder for the development process. We worked hand in hand tget the feel we were going for and were careful when selecting the addition of instruments and everything else. We then got the instrumentalists together to lay down the tracks and once those were completed, we got to work on the final vocals to send to have mixed and mastered! Working with Christian was truly a wonderful experience, and I could not recommend him more!
  6. How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words?
    Raw, personal, open, w/ country & R&B influence
  7. What are a few of your favorite venues to play at?
    The Bowery Vault, Winners, my room (where I feel the calmest)
  8. What is one of your favorite quotes?
    “If not us, who? If not now, when?”
  9. Is there anything else you would like to share?
    My song ‘Outloud’ is out and streaming everywhere! I have so much more in the works and will have more music out over the next several months!

Torrey McDowell (Artist Spotlight)

What started as a love for choir and music as child eventually grown into a life’s dream for artist Tarrey McDowell. After culling up a songwriting habit in the second grade, it made sense that McDowell would next achieve a vocal performance scholarship at Piedmont College. Beyond the walls of school, the Georgia-local’s musical goal became set on “healing, growth, and empowerment.”

McDowell wants to design a secure place for music lovers by writing about the hard stuff…the truths and inspiration that she needed years ago. By struggling with depression, overcoming an abusive relationship, and establishing herself as a part of the LGBTQ+ community, McDowell gets inspiration from all genes of the musical spectrum. Some of her influencers are JoJo Levesque, Jennifer Hudson, Kelsea Ballerini, Sam Smith\, and other cross-genre musicians.

She now is living in Nashville, McDowell will debut her message-driven songs throughout 2022 and is busily booking local and regional shows. McDowell brand-new single “Outloud,” is out now and can be listened on Spotify and Apple Music. If you would like to find out more about the great and kind-hearted Torrey McDowell then good take a look at her website (https://www.torreymcdowellmusic.com). 

Social Media Accounts: 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/torreymcdowellmusic/

TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@torreymcd

Stephen Ray~ Artist Spotlight/ Q&A!!!

Artist Spotlight:

Stephen Ray is a Nashville based country singin’ songwriter & artist who was raised in both the arctic cold of Wisconsin and Michigan & the warm beaches of California. Stephen has opened for acts such as Toby Keith, Parmalee, and Chris Janson. His music is available on all streaming platforms.

Q&A:

Hi Stephen, can you tell us all about yourself before you became a country musician? 

Hi there! Yes! I started writing country music around 2010, and began taking it more seriously around 2016 when I decided to record and release music as “Stephen Ray” for the first time. Prior to that, I was working and living in San Diego, CA. I also performed in a rock band with my brother for many years! Music has always a been a big part of my life. 

What made you want a career in country music?

I was always a fan of country music and for as long as I remember (well, about 7th grade when I started playing guitar) I was in bands with my brother and friends growing up, but we played more punk and pop rock. But I remember in high school burning CD’s with Dierks Bentley and Tim McGraw, who are two of my favorite artists, and constantly making mixed CD’s with multiple genres. My CD’s would go from New Found Glory to Shania Twain to Pure Moods to Gym Class Heroes to Enya and back to New Found Glory. HA.  But by the time I was in college, and right after college I was listening and going to a lot more country concerts in San Diego, Brad Paisley, Florida Georgia Line, Thomas Rhett, etc. After taking some time off from my rock band days, I eventually started to write and record more pop country style music and songs. 

What is the background story behind your latest single “Bud Light Sign?” 

I wrote Bud Light Sign with my three good friends, Ryan Sorestad, Brit Knott and Taylor Nash. (Yes, we live in Nashville and his real last name is Nash.) The day we wrote, they had been at a Logan’s Roadhouse restaurant having lunch and waiting for Guitar Center next door to open. Ryan was sitting there and saw two Bud Light signs above the bar when the idea hit him to write something about being “brighter than a Bud Light sign”. We met later that day to write and this song started to come to life when we thought of eyes being bluer than the Bud Light sign! The rest was history! 

Who are some of your musical icons?

Enya, Tom Petty, Relient K, Phil Collins, Peter Gabriel and Dierks Bentley. All for different reasons. The way they make me feel, the time period they represent from my life when I listened to them most, their musical style, how they are/were as human beings and the sonic and lyrical styles behind them all I believe all play a major part in my own sound. 

How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words?

Fun, catchy and authentic. 

What are a few of your favorite venues to play at?

I played a few shows at House of Blues San Diego that were amazing! I got to open up for Parmalee once at HOB and also Logan Mize.I also opened up for Chris Janson at The Novo in Los Angeles, that was a blast. Tin Roofs are always fun here in Nashville and I always enjoy playing writers rounds at Live Oak, and it was a blast playing Whiskey Jam

What is your recording process like when creating and making new music?

My last few singles I’ve recorded with Grady Saxman at his studios in Mt. Juliet, TN. It usually takes a few days and involves a night of pre-production where we work through the song acoustically to make sure we have the structure of the song completed and charted out. The next day we’ll bring in the session players to come in and track the song as a band. That is always my favorite part of the process to simply watch and be amazed by the talent in the room. We’re talking some of the best musicians in the world here in Nashville and I am very grateful for that. Then I’ll track the vocals, send the song out for mixing and mastering and there you go! You’ve heard the saying “it takes a village” and Nashville country music is no exception to that. 

What is one of your favorite quotes?

How do you like the food here at Camp Hope?

Is there anything else you would like to share? 

Thanks for having me! My social channels are all @STEPHENRAYMUSIC on Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, etc. Go follow!