Why country music ?
~ Country music is my roots. My dad is from Texas. My mom’s family is from dairy farms in Wisconsin. I grew up listening to country music. I think people question my choice because I live in Los Angeles, but country is about our roots. Like I say in my song Countrified, “You can take the girl away, but the country’s gonna stay.”
If everything would be possible (waking the dead included , which two people should sing the ultimate country duet?
~ I’d like to hear Johnny Cash and Chris Stapleton sing “Crazy Old Soldier” and really kick it up a notch.
What song you ever recorded means the most to you and why?
~ “We Are America” is my most important and most heartfelt song. It’s a song that gives back. The heart of the song is to remind us that we are still a great nation, especially in the midst of so much turmoil. I wrote and re-wrote, and re-wrote it until it was exactly what I wanted to convey.
Who would you like to write a song for you?
~ I love the writing part of this business, so I would choose to channel all the best writers who have ever written into one great song that I have written. That would be cool.
What is the one thing that readers/fans would be surprised to know about you?
~ I’m shy. I’ve learned to be great with people, but I like my quiet time alone.
Give us one country song you never want to hear on radio anymore and tell us why.
~ Every song about a girl and a truck. There’s so much more to sing about.
What is the question interviewers never seem to ask you and…you wish they would? (Please provide your answer as well.)
~ What’s taken so long?? This is a super hard business that appears glamorous on the surface and requires relentless “blood, sweat and tears” in reality. I am proud that I have endured and that I keep going, especially given the huge setbacks that have come my way (my daughter’s fight with leukemia, my current bout with kidney failure and the loss of my dad). Someone said, “You win if you don’t quit.” I think we have to redefine what success means to us. I’m still trying to find that line. Meanwhile, I do it because I love music, not because I’m trying to prove anything. And if I end up still doing this as a toothless old lady in a walker, you may have to tackle me to get me to sit down.
Describe the ultimate recording studio (not the technique but the facilities)
~ My own barn! (This is my dream barn, I don’t have it yet). It’s a barn on the outside, and an insulated studio and party space on the inside. A mixture of hay bales and couches, with warm wood trim beams. Lots of space for live recordings, and a living room setting for hanging out. I would also throw in a kitchen and a chef, because I love being cooked for.
Johnny or June ?
~ Johnny. If you really think about his life, it was messed up!! But if you romanticize it, the way we like to do… Johnny was just plain cool. And then you hear his voice and it’s all over. He was the original Bro Country.
Are you still nervous before going on stage and if so, do you use any “rituals” to calm you nerves.
~ Yes, but it’s a good nervous because I love it. It’s more of an energy, not fear. I try to take slow deep breaths if I get a little worked up, but mostly I pour the energy out into my performance. I love performing.
What was the most memorable day in your musical career and tell us why.
~ The first day I recorded at Blackbird studio with the most amazing musicians in the world. They loved my music and complimented me on my singing… and we became friends who have continued to record together. I looked around the studio, which is owned by one of my major influences (Martina McBride) and almost couldn’t believe I was really there.