I picked up the guitar, and as if by some freak of nature, immediately strummed out four chords. Pierre quickly turned around, “Hey! That didn’t sound half bad!” At almost the same time, my Dad popped up from his chair, situated on the other side of the wall and added, “Yeah, girl – who taught you that?!” With a half smile and eyebrows raised high, I shrug my shoulders and quietly push out the words, “Umm…no one.”
That was the summer of 2002. I was in the studio with my sister because she’s always been the “great singer” of the family, and a producer had picked her out of a slew full of other girls to do a recording project with him. Me? I just wrote songs for her, played the drum-set (for my church), and occasionally sang back-up for my sister, or with the choir. I was a basketball player, two-time high school class president, and even the 2001 Carnation City Festival 2nd Runner-Up to the Carnation Queen (our hometown’s annual pageant – Alliance, OH), for goodness sake! By no means was I a soloist or guitarist…just a songwriter, at the most. Well, that was all about to change.
You see, one week later (and with a BIG “nudge” from my sister), I wrote my first song on the guitar I now call “Woody.” (I actually wrote it for my sister to sing.) However, it wasn’t until a few months later that I wrote my second song (“Sit and Talk”)…and that’s when they ALL started coming…except, this time, it was emotion that was bullying me into writing them.
So, with influences like Jonatha Brooke, Incubus, Norah Jones, The Dixie Chicks, Lauryn Hill, and John Mayer, I began to hone my craft; and the following summer, this self-taught singer/songwriter/guitarist got her first paid gig. So, here I am today, in my final year at Hiram College – with many gigs, venues, and songs under my belt – and, I’m still at it...
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