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! 

Megan Dawson (Q&A)!!!

Emma-Lee Photography
  1. Hello Megan, can you tell us all a little bit about yourself before you became a country musician?

Before becoming a country musician I actually attended my first year of University whilst also coaching volleyball! I definitely loved music and secretly would sing but never in front of people. I didn’t play an instrument at the time and so I would write poetry and lyrics but had never written a full song. About a year later, I met some family friends that were musical and I would do some backup vocals in their band through summer of 2016. In the Fall that followed, I went and bought my first guitar and then taught myself how to play four chords through Google and YouTube. From there, I wrote my first song and have continued writing and performing ever since!

  1. What made you want a career in country music?

I have always loved a wide range of types of music including, Shania Twain, Avril Lavigne, Britney Spears, Taylor Swift etc. In regards to writing and creating music, I have found home for me is incorporating hooky melodies with lyrics that really capture an emotion and tell a story. I feel this is where I have found the balance with a pop-country sound and where my music feels most authentic to me.

  1. Who are some of your musical icons?

Shania Twain has always been one of my favorite artists of all time. Her ability to be so versatile in her sound has always really inspired me in being fearless in the pursuit of creating music that has a unique sound. Taylor Swift is definitely another artist who has inspired me from both a songwriting and artistry perspective, especially in her ability to continue to grow and enter into new chapters as an artist over the duration of a long career.

  1. What is the background story behind your new single “Kissed Me Like That?”

I first heard this song about a year ago and immediately fell in love with it. The song was written by Emma-Lee, Madeline Merlo and Lindsay Rimes and brings to life the concept of experiencing a love unlike you’ve ever experienced before. This felt so fitting to where I am at in my life and the overall vibe and sound was so on point with the type of song I wanted to record. It brings a vibrancy that really resonated with me and also felt like the perfect summer song.

  1. What is your recording process like when you are making and creating new music?

For my last few singles I have been able to work with my amazing producer, “Dan Swinimer” and it was such an amazing experience. For my first two singles this year, I had the opportunity to be the voice on these songs written by such incredible writers and it was such a great time bringing my sound and story to the concept created by the writers. The recording process was so much fun and I found it challenged me to grow into my voice and learn so much about myself as an artist. 

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

I would say; bright, relatable, authentic.

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

I love playing at The King Eddy in Calgary. I have so many amazing memories of both acoustic and full band shows at this venue and I find the audience is always so present and attentive which is really special. I also loved playing at the YYC International Airport and being able to welcome people into the city, I always had a story to tell after playing here for a few hours and I always thought that was such a cool and unique way to share live music with people. 

  1. What is one of your favorite quotes?

“Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” – Babe Ruth. I love this quote because I have always found that getting out of my comfort zone, challenging myself and pursuing through something that brought upon a sense of fear at the beginning, is one of the most rewarding feelings.

Megan Dawson~ Artist Spotlight!!!

Emma-Lee Photography

Megan Dawson is a country and pop singer and songwriter from Calgary, AB. In July of 2021, she was nominated for the YYC Music Awards “Solo Artist of the Year.” Dawson has joined many artist development programs such as Canada’s Music Incubator’s Artist Entrepreneur West professional development program at Studio Bell, home of the National Centre (2019) and the RBC Launchpad Entrepreneur program (2021).

With over 640,000 combined streams on Spotify, making the Yangroo DMDS “Most Active Indie” list on its first week at radio with “Influence” and being shown on various editorial playlists on Spotify (Live Country, New Music Friday Canada, Fresh Finds Country), “Influence” has made for a great start to 2022.

Dawson’s latest single, “Kissed Me Like That,” was produced by Dan Swinimer, and written by Madeline Merlo, Emma-Lee and Lindsay Rimes. The song showcases a thrilling sound for the artist. It also brings hooky lyrics and a lively melody expressing the feelings of happiness when falling in love. With the mixing of Dawson’s dazzling vocals, this song showcases a lively sound to the pop/country scene. 

If you would like to find out more about the talented Megan Dawson go take look at her social media pages down below. Thanks again MD, for wanting to be a part of my site! 

Emma-Lee Photography

Social Media Accounts: 

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

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MegDawsonMusic

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCKiOGQtJQXuXHkwbY1lYTnA

Jon Edmund~ Q&A!!

  1. Hi Jon, can you tell us all a little bit about yourself before you became a country musician? Before I became a country artist, I was actually a drummer in a pop/rock band called ONE TWO TEN.  After doing that I was hooked, I knew I wanted to work in the industry, but not always as a drummer.
  2. Who are some of your musical icons? My main musical hero is Toby Keith.  I believe as a writer and an artist he has been able to not only have one of the most successful careers but able to impact so many people through the music he continues to make.
  3. What made you want a career in country music? As I grew up in Oklahoma, country music was ingrained in my lifestyle, so I think it was more of an instinctive thing to want to write country music than anything.
  4. What is the background of your latest single “Country Girl Swing?” I wrote Country Girl Swing about people always judging other people about how they live their life but when in reality everyone just wants to enjoy life even though they may go about that in different ways.  I have the dream of watching people line dance to this song.
  5. How would you describe your music in 3 to 5 words? Upbeat, Driven, Storytelling
  6. What is your recording process like when you are creating and making new music?  I actually wrote these songs by myself so it wasn’t until taking it into the studio did I start involving other people.  For Country Girl Swing, I got to work with some people I really look up to like Rich Redmond (Drummer for Jason Aldean) and Trent Bell, and Chad Copelin to name a few, so it was just an amazing experience getting to have them be a part of bringing this song to life.
  7. What are a few of your favorite venues to play at? Some of my favorite venues are actually in Oklahoma.  I have gotten to play at some amazing venues like The Zoo Amphitheater, The Jones Assembly, and Diamond Ballroom.  All very different but such cool places.
  8. What is one of your favorite quotes? The quote that I live my life by is “Don’t wait for opportunities, create them”. I’m not sure if anyone is quoted saying that so I say that I made it up (even though I am sure other people have said it too).
  9. Is there anything else you would like to share? I would like to share that this is just the beginning.  I am releasing a three-song EP called Southern Gentleman in June.

Jon Edmund~ Artist Spotlight!!

Country singer/songwriter Jon Edmund is 22 years old and is from Norman, Oklahoma. Although he is new to releasing his music, he is not new to the music scene. Through playing in many different bands, writing, producing and mixing, he feels greatly thankful to get so many outlooks on how music is made and how the industry works. His first EP, “Southern Gentleman,” will be coming out on June 10th, 2022 and will feature three songs that will show what kind of artist he wants to be. 

Edmund’s latest single is “Country Girl Swing,” and it came this year. His music is available to listen on both Spotify and Apple Music. If you would like to find out more  about Jon Edmund please go check out his social media pages down below. Thanks again Jon for being a part of my site. 

Social Media Accounts:

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jonedmundmusic

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCSKRURYB_RNXRDWavffS06Q

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