Interview With Britta-N-Brooke of The Redheads
The Redheads, named for their long fiery red hair, are Britta, 19, and hersister/co-writer, Brooke, 16. These Florida girls, living in Cartersville, Georgia, but Nashville-bound, could very well be the next big thing. With their upbeat, sassy tunes such as "Boys Will Be Boys" and my personal favorite, the comical "Hillbillies Living in the City," they are headed for the big time. Don`t be fooled, they also touch very delicate subjects such as child abuse with their soothing, melodic "Light a Candle." With the perfect combination of sweet and spicy ear catching music, these girls are a force to be reckoned with in country music. They make monthly trips to Nashville, learning the craft and business and working on a greatfuture with their music!
You can catch the Redheads on myspace at: http://www.myspace.com/theredheadsbrittabrooke and website is http://theredheads.net
[Jenna Love] Nashville is very competetive, where do you get your drive to keep going from?
Brooke Well, for us, country music has always been a matter of the heart. At eleven years old I was trampled by my horse- beat up head to toe. Everyone thought I would be okay because there werenít any broken bones. But scar tissue had formed throughout my muscles and when I grew, all my muscles ripped. Overnight, I went from being in runners club, horseback riding, advanced ballet to not being able to walk for a full year. I lost my entire twelve-year-old year and to be honest, a lot of dreams were shattered for me. I became very quiet and reserved. Just very, very, genuinely sad.
I remember I was laying in my bed one day, flipping through channels, when I found the country music station. The songs just grabbed my heart and shook it up. There were the sad songs like "Angels In Waiting," that were good to hear when you needed a good cry, but most importantly just the fun songs thatr eally got me involved in country music. Rebaís song ďIím Gonna Take That Mountain,Ē became my own personal theme song and my inspiration. I became a huge country music fan. It brought me out of my shell and made me laugh again.
This has been more of a spiritual journey, more than a journey for fame or fortune for me. I want to see how far this can go and do take it very seriously. Country music is all from the heart. Itís songs from the heart and thatís where Iíd say we both get our drive from. Iíll turn it over to Britta to tell her side of the story...
Britta Yes, I agree with Brooke. That was our journey and how it all began with us. And our journey continues and we are thankful for all the amazing people and experiences we have encountered along the way. We donít get caught up in a feeling of competitiveness, we feel like everyone in Nashville has something to offer. We enjoy watching and listening to other aspiring songwriters. We rely on our hearts and our hard work to carry us through.
[Jenna Love] How supportive have your parents been throughout your journey so far?
Brooke & Britta Our parents have been very supportive. Theyíve made many sacrifices for us. We even laugh. Our dadís car is like "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" and he really needs a new car. But instead of getting things for his own self, he always makes sure we have guitar lessons, seminars, new strings, anything we need for the business. Our mom makes sure weíre safe and sound. Neither one is pushy or a stage parent or anything like that. They basically let us lead the way and make the decisions of our own careers.
[Jenna Love] How do you deal with rejection, and how important is it to build uptough skin in this town?
Brooke It is important to have a tough skin. No matter what field you go into you canít take rejections to heart. Itís all a learning process.
Britta Both of us did advance ballet for years and boy, talk about rejection and criticism. I think that helped us build a tough skin. And yes, you need to have a tough skin in this business. Rejection is a part of life. You embrace it and never lose your drive.
[Jenna Love] What are some key things you have learned from the Nashville circuit?
Brooke Nashville is amazing. So many talented, wonderful people here. Thereís just no place like Nashville. The songwriting community is so gifted. Thereís so many open mics and clubs around town. We just love The Bluebird Cafť. It is absolutely precious.
Britta We have learned so much and are so thankful to be chasing our dreams. Nashville is the coolest town ever. All the open mics and the support from NSAI and SGA has been incredible.
[Jenna Love] How often do you write and who are your strongest musicalinfluences?
Brooke I write every day. I take notes all day long in my phone, which has a keyboard, fortunately for me. Toby Keith, Reba, and Randy Travis are three of my main influences. But actually, anyone thatís country has influenced in some way.
Britta We try to write as much as possible. Over the past year, Georgia has become our writing haven. We have two Quarter horses on a property in Georgia and it has just made a great inspiration for us to write. I always carry a notebook with me and am constantly jotting down ideas. Also, I have an iPod recorder in my purse and sing little melodies. So writing for us is constantly on our minds. As far as influences go, it's like Brooke said, anyone whoís country has influenced us. I honestly could go on and on, but some of my main influences are Loretta Lynn, Garth Brooks, and other duos like The Judds, Brooks & Dunn, and Montgomery Gentry.
[Jenna Love] How important are workshops and organizations such as NSAI, ASCAP, and BMI to a songwriter just starting out in Nashville?
Brooke & Britta We canít even begin to tell you how much we love NSAI and SGA! Both organizations have taken our writing to a whole other playing field. We recently attended a Song Camp and Songpossium with NSAI and the song critiques, the lectures, and all the information was just wonderful. NSAI is so supportive of songwriters and really helps you better yourself. SGA is also a blessing. The people we met through SGA were so talented and shared so much knowledge with us that we truly feel blessed to have both these organizations. We highly recommend any songwriter to join those.
[Jenna Love] Do you have any advice for out of town songwriters living outside of Tennessee?
Brooke NSAI has meetings in your state, so you can look up on their website to find a local chapter. If you can arrange to come in to visit Nashville thatís really great. Join NSAI and SGA and you can have your songs critiqued long distance. Keep writing!
Britta Whatís really cool about coming into Nashville is you have a support group. Everyone understands where youíre coming from. Itís really helpful to come to one of the seminars that NSAI or SGA put on annually because youíll get a lot more support and knowledge. But if you canít arrange it thatís okay. They have different local chapters in many of the states and you also can submit your stuff for critique.
[Jenna Love] Do you have any upcoming shows or performances we should know about?
Brooke & Britta Currently, weíre focusing on writing and re-writing. We practice four hours a day on the guitar so the guitar is very important to us. Most Mondays youíll find us at The Bluebird- sometimes performing, sometimes listening. Weíre headed back to our home state, Florida, in the spring to sing some national anthems at The Bright House Networks Field for the major league baseball spring training games. Weíre excited about that.
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