Interview with Artist Name [of Band Name]
Texas songstress BRIT DANIELS is a busy woman. Not only has she dropped three cover videos recently, she’s also released the video for her latest single EULOGY and is about to release another! Brit made time in her busy schedule to answer some in-depth & raw questions for us here at AMNPLIFY.
Congratulations on your newest, soon-to-be released single, Shadows.
How do you feel when you premiere new music to the public?
I love releasing new music! It’s always so exciting to finally put something that you’ve worked so hard on out into the world! It’s also extremely rewarding. It can be a little nerve wracking solely because you’re excited, and you obviously have no idea exactly how people will react. I’m so confident that people will love Shadows because it’s such a cool song, though! I can’t wait for everyone to hear it!
Your music has been described as a mix of pop, rock and EDM. How would you describe your musical style?
I definitely think my music encompasses different aspects of those styles, but lately I’ve been describing my music as “dark pop” because there are a lot of darker vibes and elements in the production.
You were born and raised in Dallas, Texas. Did country music play a role in your development as a musician? If it did, what did you learn from country music?
Honestly, I wouldn’t say it really played a role in my development per se. I did dabble in country music when I lived in Texas a little bit, but I was already pretty developed. I do love the way country songs tell a very specific story most of the time. It’s a cool quality that country music encompasses. Pop music is what I’m rooted in, and it’s where my heart is as far as creating music goes!
Your mother put headphones on her belly when pregnant with you and you were just 2 years old when your mother heard you sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star in the backyard of your home. It sounds as if you began singing around the same time you learned to talk. Has singing always felt like a natural part of who you are as a woman and as a musician?
Oh, 100%!! I’ve been singing for as long as I can even remember. Although I see the importance of a vocal coach now, I never had any professional training until I was older. It totally was a God-given talent that I was honestly born with. I’m so thankful too because music has been the biggest part of my life since the beginning.
To hone your craft, you began recording in local studios and singing in talent shows. What did these experiences teach you, both musically and personally?
The most important things that I learned from these experiences were comfortability, both in the studio and on stage. On the other hand, I learned how to act when I’m pushed out of my comfort zone too. I’m SO thankful that I began recording so early and performing in talent shows because to this day, I can walk into any studio or go on any stage, and I’m pretty dang comfortable. These experiences have also taught me how to be adaptable because every studio and producer is different, and every stage and audience is different as well.
When you sang your National Anthem at several Texas Rangers baseball games, how prideful did you allow yourself to feel when singing such an important song?
Honestly, I wasn’t prideful at all in myself. I was so honored and humbled to be able to sing such a prestigious song on such an incredibly amazing and large platform. I sang at a game when former President George W. Bush was present & was able to honor my dad on live television, and it was insane. Still very humbled and blessed by that opportunity.
You completed a university degree in Radio, Television and Film at the University of North Texas. Subsequently, you completed an internship in radio where you moved to Nashville to work at a major label and management company, to learn about the music business. Given how many bands and solo musicians over the years have been ripped off by certain recording companies and untrustworthy managers, how important do you believe it is for recording artists to know the ins and outs of the music business?
IT IS SO, UNBELIEVABLY IMPORTANT!!! Even though I haven’t even scratched the surface of knowing everything. I have learned enough to at least be able to stay in the know. It’s so important to have a strong team in this industry, and even though things are delegated to different individuals, it’s still so important to have an idea of what’s going on with your career. Even though music is such a creative thing, it’s also a business, and the second you decide to pursue it as a career choice, you have to understand that it is a business.
Sadly, during your freshman year at college, your father passed away due to injuries sustained from a car accident while on duty as a police officer. Given your father gave you your first instrument, did the experience confirm for you that writing, recording and performing music can be extremely cathartic for the artist in being able to express how you feel about particular events in your life?
It definitely is. I will be the first to tell you that I really started seriously writing when I lost my dad. It was unbelievably therapeutic for me, and the emotions from that experience are still represented in a lot of my music that I write, record and perform to this day. Losing my dad, and channeling those emotions into writing, helped me connect with myself on a level I don’t think I ever really had before. It’s interesting to see how far I’ve come in my creativity since going through the depths of that experience.
In relation to the previous question, your first single, Eulogy, shows that we can face troubles head on, find the positives from the experience, and recognise that our lives have been forever enriched by that person and that they will never be forgotten. Is that how you feel? Also, do you feel your father’s presence when you are creating and performing music?
I do believe this! I feel like everyone in our lives serve a purpose even if it’s just for a specific season in your life. They always leave an impression, whether good or bad. You should always look at those situations it in a positive manner, though, and never forget your worth as a person. I do feel my father’s presence a lot when I am creating or performing. He always pushed me to do what I love – music, and he is a huge part of why I am able to pursue this crazy dream of mine. He’s definitely a part of it still to this day.
You have begun work on a new project with the help of producer Jonathan Perkins (The Chainsmokers, Jay Sean, Big Time Rush) What can you share about the songs and the whole “feel” you are trying to create with this new project?
I’m actually planning on releasing singles for the time being. You can definitely expect them to all have a similar “dark pop” production vibe, and a few of them will be a little more vulnerable than I’ve ever gotten before. I’m really excited for you guys to hear what I’ve been coming up with!
I love the following quote where you said, “You start doing so much to fit in and be popular that suddenly standing out becomes the challenge. Don’t be afraid to be yourself, trust in what you love and focus on that”. Why do I love this quote? Because all of us, whether we have been considered “weirdos” or “outcasts” or we “look slightly odd” or any and all other reasons why we have been made to feel excluded, can take comfort in your message to love ourselves exactly the way we are. How important do you believe our individuality to be?
I think individuality is SO important. I remember in my early highschool years, I wanted to be apart of every club or organization to make me more likable ( I stretched myself pretty thin), and now I look back and I’m like “Why did I even waste my time on that? I don’t even talk to those people anymore”. I’ve learned to embrace who I am, and I’ve truly come to learn my value as a person. I think that’s really the most important thing is learning that you are valuable, you are loved and you are SO important because you are the only you this world has. Also, no matter how normal someone may be, we all have super weird things about us, and I think weirdness makes the world more fun.
Speaking as one of your brand new fans, I have listened to your songs via your Music Videos on your Facebook page and I love them and really love your voice which has a sweetness and soulfulness with a rock edge. If you continue on this upward trajectory, you will likely experience the same kind of success as Taylor Swift, Kelly Clarkson, Katy Perry and Ariana Grande, to name just a few. Are you ready for the industry to discover your catchy, dancey, sing as loud as we can in our cars, kind of recognition and (inevitable) success?
You are so sweet! It makes me so happy to hear you love the music so much! I can honestly say that I am at a point in my life where I am 100% ready for this kind of success. I know exactly who I am as a person and as an artist, and I know that that kind of success wouldn’t change me as a person at all. I have amazing people in my life who keep me grounded and who will make sure I stay humble, so I definitely have the support system that is needed for all that is to come!
If I may digress slightly, how can young performers such as Britney Spears, Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, etc, who have grown up in the public eye, safeguard themselves from some of the more unsavoury aspects of the entertainment industry?
Honestly, I think the most important thing that young artists can do is to build a strong team of people (and to surround themselves with people – including family and friends) who believe in you, who genuinely love you as a person, and who care about your well-being. Those are the people that are going to stand by your side and have your back in the good and bad times. Surrounding yourself with people like this is important at any age, but especially when you’re young because those are the types of people you want pouring into your life from the beginning.
What songs do you play really loudly in your car and sing at the top of your lungs? Speaking personally, I’ve been playing Queen’s Greatest Hits a lot lately. Love the rock opera sound of the band and their songs.
Haha I love it! Any time I’m totally jamming out in my car, I probably have my old iPod from high school plugged in. So, the music mainly consists of punk rock, and the bands I’m listening to are probably Paramore, All Time Low, Mayday Parade, Go Radio, We the Kings, etc. I was a “punk rock princess” in high school, and used to go to local shows weekly. I’ve always had very diverse musical tastes, but I went through a stage in high school where I mainly only listened to pop music and punk rock music & I was a cheerleader, so most people could never put their finger on my personality.
If you had a bucket list and could collaborate with whoever you want, on a whole album, who might that be? Do you have any songwriting or producing heroes? Alternatively, would you rather create an album where you sing, duet style, with 10-12 singer/songwriters?
Hands down Max Martin as a songwriting/producing hero – would LOVE to work with him!! It would also be cool to do something with The Chainsmokers too. I love their style, and they seem like they would be fun to collaborate with. I’d love to create an album where I mainly sing, and then maybe have a couple of duets on it as well. In doing a full album, I think I’d love to collaborate with multiple songwriters. I feel like bringing in new people can bring a whole different element to the process, so it would be cool to work with a lot of different people as long as they all understood my vision for the project and my vibe as an artist – that’s alway the most important thing.
I’d like to close with a questionnaire created by Bernard Pivot:
What is your favourite word?
I don’t know if I technically have one. I probably say “balls” more than most people – it keeps me from saying other words.
What is your least favourite word?
Crud. I used to say the world crud instead of crap, and the more I said the word crud, the more stupid I thought it sounded.
What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?
Experiences- whether good or bad. Although, I always try to see the good in bad experiences. Honestly, I can say experiences enhance my creative process. I’m a Christian, and experiences bring me closer to the Lord and enhance my spirituality. Experiences always affect me emotionally too.
What turns you off?
When people waste my time. I always say, time is the most valuable thing we all possess on this Earth.
What is your favourite curse word?
I try not to curse, so I normally say “balls” in some fashion in place of whatever curse word I want to say in that moment. haha.
What sound or noise do you love?
When my oven timer goes off because that means FOOD.
What sound or noise do you hate?
My alarm clock. Every morning. No debate there.
What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?
I honestly don’t ever even entertain that idea any more. I used to think about getting my real estate license one day or being on the radio (since I studied radio).
What profession would you not like to do?
I could never be a surgeon or a nurse. I have no problem getting a shot, but I could never give one, nor could I ever do surgery or anything like that.
If Heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the Pearly Gates?
I completely believe heaven and God exist, and I would love nothing more than to hear him say “Well done, my good and faithful servant”.
Connect with Brit Daniels
- Julie Ink-Slinger