I wanted to continue today with yesterday's featured artists, Brokedown Cadillac, mainly because they are awesome and also because the Q&A session below goes beyond country music as a genre. Check it out!
Country artist's don't get a lot of mainstream exposure...what's your plan for Brokedown Cadillac? Where do you see it going?
There are those in country music like Reba, Garth Brooks, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, and Shania who have broken into mainstream quite successfully. Taylor Swift has certainly captured the world's attention. And I believe they all brought something quite interesting to pop radio. All those artists have expertly stayed true to country in their own way, yet still provided plenty of music that your typical pop fan can appreciate and even want to buy. I think Brokedown follows along that tradition of pop country. We have real roots, you're not going to be able to refute that, but all of us come from a variety of tastes that tend toward mainstream music, and in the end, I think a broader spectrum of music fans will want to hear it.
Why country music? Why not another genre?
Randy: No matter what genre of music I've played, I've always found myself listening to country music. My dad raised me on a strict diet of country and western, and even when I was playing in rock bands, I was inevitably tuned to the country station. By the time I started working with Corri, I was so hyped about finally playing country that it just gushed out of me. It felt "right."
Corri: I was born and raised in Atlanta, Ga, so country music was always just music for me. Not really defined, you know. I grew up on it, and when Randy and I started writing, it was just so obvious that we shared a great love of the genre - it came out very naturally in the writing process.
What's been the hardest part about working in the music industry?
In this day and age all of the models are being reshaped. What used to work in the old days, sending in a crappy acoustic demo tape just doesn't cut it. And as the labels seem to be hemorrhaging, the internet is providing a whole new frontier. The down side is that with recording becoming so pervasive with every iMac shipped with Garage Band, there are millions of bands vying for consumers' attention. So what has changed has also stayed the same - a band needs some method for getting into the mainstream's awareness. That is about the most challenging quandary I've experienced to date.
Corri - You have a long list of acting credentials...Why the switch to music? Do you see yourself doing both? What inspired you to do music in the first place? Any musical inspirations? [old school/new school]
I definitely plan on doing both. Even though my acting has been the "real" career thus far, music has always been a huge part of my life, and trust me, anytime I had a break between acting jobs, I was writing and playing music... So it really doesn't even feel like a career switch for me, it just feels like I'm putting more focus on the other side of my career. My dad is definitely my biggest musical influence - he is a musician so I was around music from the time I was born, I literally played with tuning forks when I was a kid, and was on the road with his band while I was growing up. His band played original tunes but also covered the Everly Brother, Beatles, Bruce Springsteen, Elvis....I get really nostalgic when I hear "Glory Days" or "I Saw Her Standing There" - those are faves from childhood.
What songs are your favorite to perform/ Why?
Randy: I personally love "Baby's Gonna Start a Fire" because it is a straight up dance song. If we don't see people up dancing, then I measure it as our failure to capture the audience. We have had few shows where no one gets up and starts shaking their ass, but those few where we didn't see that happening, well we knew it was time to step up the game. It's a great barometer.
Corri: I love singing "Scarlett O'Hara." Being from Atlanta, when I read "Gone with the Wind" I fell in love with that character - she is so sassy, I just loved her. And I feel like the song captures that attitude and has a bluesy feel, which is just a lot of fun to dig into during a live show.
How was it working on the set and writing songs for Race to Witch Mountain?
Randy: Working on the set was the best experience of my life. Andy Fickman(the director) let all of our families come on to set, and we got to be little rock stars for a day. Seeing the pride in my mom's eyes practically brings me to tears. It was awesome. As far as writing for the movie, it was just great to see Andy get so excited about the music we were bringing him, and I think at about that time we really needed some enthusiasm because it was still rather new.
Corri: Ditto to what Randy said. Andy Fickman is ridiculously awesome! And to we got to have the most perfect show you could ask for - we had people doing our hair and makeup, a built in crowd who two-stepped to our music, and a track going to we never missed a note! Plus Dwayne Johnson was there so the scenery was nice!
Would you say the movie exposure has increased/changed your fan base?
Absolutely. We were able to expose a lot of folks to our music in a very short period of time, and that exposure has given us many great opportunities- from meeting new fans, to playing really cool shows that we would otherwise not have had the opportunity to play. It's been amazing.
What type of advice would you give aspiring musicians?
Randy: Work hard. Be dedicated. I don't know how anyone can possibly get anywhere musically without those two virtues. Beyond that, try not to hold your breath too long. Sometimes opportunities take a while, but when they come, boy you better be ready to step up to the plate.
Corri: Perseverance is key, not just in music, but in any kind of artistic career. And no matter how tough it gets, you gotta have fun - an audience can feel your energy in your voice, lyrics, stage presence - and if you feel it, they will feel it too, and keep on coming back.
Any concert dates or upcoming shows?
We've been touring Southern California Navy bases over the past 9 months, and we're getting ready to head out on a USO tour, which we are thrilled about. And 2010 will be all about playing the Southeast!
I enjoy listening to Brokedown Cadillac live so here are some more cuts from their album Somewhere in America. [Scarlet O'Hara (Ghost of Dixie) and Love on the Run]. Enjoy!