|1. Hello Mae, can you tell us all a little bit about yourself before you became a country musician? Hi! I’m an independent country artist, originally from southwest Arkansas. I’ve lived in Nashville TN for almost six years now, pursuing a career in singing/songwriting. I’ve spent most of my time here waiting tables/working retail/a million other side jobs, but I recently signed my first publishing deal in Nov. of 2020 so that’s an exciting dream of mine that’s recently come true! |
2. What made you want a career in country music? I started singing when I was 7 years old. I grew up rodeoing and decided one day that I could sing the national anthem better than the Leeann Rimes version they played before each rodeo, so my Mom who was in charge of the books for the event, gave me a microphone and the rest is history.
3. Who are some of your musical icons? My biggest influences are Keith Whitley and Lee Ann Womack. Keith died before I was even born, but I’ve never felt more at home than when I listen to his recordings. I’ve learned a lot about conveying emotion by listening to how he interpreted songs. Lee Ann definitely taught me to sing. We share a lot of similar influences and I don’t think the woman has ever recorded a song I wasn’t obsessed with. I also love the career she’s built as an artist. I think she’s respected throughout the industry and is just an all-around legend.
4. What is the background story behind your new single “Hell You Raised?” I’ve always been a bit of a dare-devil (riding bucking bulls, breaking my eye socket, etc.) and one day while we were talking about all of the trouble I’ve caused, my Mama said “I guess I’ll take the credit or I’ll take the blame when it comes to your raising.” I paired that with another idea I had written down a long time ago and we got the hook to that song. It includes snips of southern advice that I think so many people can relate to and overall stands as an anthem dedicated to my Mama, thanking her for being the incredible influence she’s been and raising me to be so fearless, but also giving a sassy-jab by saying I’m only this way because she was too.
5. What is your recording process when creating and making new music? My recording process has honestly looked different for every song! I’m financially hindered when recording so most of my recording happens months or even years before the release. I’ve even taken a few “demos” and turned them release-ready, which is an unconventional but more cost-friendly method. My number one constant when recording has been surrounding myself with people I respect and who respect me back. I’ve been very lucky to work with some of Nashville’s best and also call most of them my friends outside of the recording process. I look forward to hopefully releasing a full project of songs very soon!
6. How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words? Real, Honest, Country
7. What are a few of your favorite venues to play at? Though not a specific venue per say, my favorite places to play so far in my career have been U.S. Air Force Bases overseas with Armed Forces Entertainment. We performed in Guam, Diego Garcia, and Singapore, and it was the most incredible experience of my life. During the pandemic, I spent most of my time playing close to home in Nashville. The Bluebird Cafe will always hold a special place in my heart and was at the top of my Bucket List when moving to town. I’ve been lucky enough to not only book my own rounds there, but also play their Sunday Spotlight show, which is an hour of just me. I look forward to expanding across the U.S. soon, as I try to book my first independent tour.
9. What is one of your favorite quotes? Dreams don’t work unless you do.
10. Is there anything else you would like to share? I go LIVE from my Facebook and Tik Tok every Monday at 7:00CST for an event I call Maeday Monday! I invite anyone who wants to hear unreleased music, requests, or ask me any questions to come hang out there.
In 1999, a seven years old went to an Arkansas rodeo arena with a cordless mic and sang the national anthem a cappella for the first time, claiming she could do it better than LeAnn Rimes. She went on to play at every rodeo she contended in, and also in other sporting events, ceremonies and opries. Not similar to most middle schoolers, Estes played every Tuesday night on an AM radio show, where she first found her love for traditional country music. A while after she moved to Nashville in 2015, she has been playing her dues for the time she came to Music City, working three jobs at a time to financially stay above and playing for anyone who would listen to her music.
Estes takes motivation from artists such as Lee Ann Womack and Keith Whitley, Mae Merges the Timelessness of Traditional Country Music with a new music sound and production to create her unique artistic background.
In 2019, Estes individually released her debut single, “Naked,” and toured internationally with Armed Forces Entertainment, playing for the U.S. Air Force Bases in Guam, Diego Garcia, and Singapore. During quarantine, she put out a nostalgic demo titled “Recycled,” followed by a spirited anthem named “Best Side.” In November 2020, Estes signed her first publishing deal with Plaid Flag Music joining a roll call including her “Best Side,” co-writer Autumn McEntire.
On March 31, 2021, Estes put out her brand-new single “Hell You Raised,” and this song is available to listen on both Spotify and iTunes. If you like to find out more about Mae Estes then check out her website at (https://www.maeestes.com).
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