Nashville resident singer/songwriter Noelle Toland wants to update and make her own old-school country music. While many may think the genre’s audience is restricted only to the South, Toland, who comes from 2,000 residents city in North Plains, Oregon confirmation that simply is not always true. “We tailgated, horsed around on farms, and loved the heartbreak behind the stories we grew up listening to,” shares Toland, who states completely with the genre.
By going back to her roots and visiting again the music from her youth, Toland started the unique alchemy that is the 2021 EP, “The Sun Will Rise.” The four-song EP, which was recorded at the famous RCA Studios in Nashville, Tennessee, and was produced by Chris Condon, is a mix of 90’s country and invities all types of souls to her music. It showcases the earth like and power of classic country music with staple instruments like pedal steel and contributions from legends such as guitarist Steve Cropper, founding member of the Stax Records House Band and Booker T. And the M.G.’s.
Toland is delighted to have such an inspirational team, whom she grew up listening to, and is thankful for the chance to make this 90’s country influenced record, which is an appreciation to admired artists like Trisha Yearwood and Faith Hill. “Hopefully this record, which I’ve long envisioned, inspires people to take chances, be bold, and place bets on themselves,” she explains, “because that is the only thing that has gotten me through ups and downs.”
At a time when the world is in a nonstop state of fear, Toland’s calmness when it comes to surfing the wave of life is just what others need to hear.
On January 27, 2023 Toland put out her latest single “Limbo.” If you would like to find out more about the great and talented Noelle Toland then please check out her website (https://www.noelletoland.com/).
“Dream loud,” is the way Texas native Lance Kotara & Colorado cowgirl LeAnna Kaufman live their lives. It was no shock that these two songwriters would find each other in Nashville, the up and coming country duo “Lance and Lea.
Inked by heart pounding harmonies, catchy guitars and passion lyrics and melodies, their collaborative intellect is on blast, with over 400 songs already written together. Their first album “There Goes My Heart,” with Grammy award winning producer Paul Worley was released in late 2018 and their music has collected airplay in the UK, Ireland, and in Music City, Nashville Tennessee.
The duo has already won an award, “New Artist Of The Year” at the 2019 iHeart Radio Rocky Mountain Country Music Awards in Lea’s home state of Colorado. “There Goes My Heart” was also nominated for Album Of The Year at 2020 iHeart Radio RMCMA’s.
In 2020 the couple raised over “16K on a fan funded crowdfunding campaign for their album “Great Big World” which was released in early 2021. That same year, in the middle of a pandemic, they booked a 31 date Backyard PopUp Tour all over the United States covering 26 states and more than 12,000 miles in an effort to generate love and live music back to the public.
In 2021, they finished an 80 date, four month long Summer Tour, playing to even more fans across the United States- this time traveling in an old-time RV aka “The Honeybee” and putting 24,000 through 38 states.
In December 2022, the duo put out their latest single “Ego,” and it is available to listen to on Spotify and iTunes. If you would like to find out more about this up and coming country duo then check out this website at (https://lanceandleamusic.com/).
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.
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/).
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).
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).
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.
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 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!
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.