Candi Carpenter talks with us about her exciting year ahead. With a much-buzzed-about new single and her Song Suffragette girls by her side, things are looking good for the Nashville songstress.
Thank you so much for taking time to talk with us Candi! So tell us what food fuels your mornings??
Coffee is a bean. Does that count as food?
We say it counts! What about your top three cities for food?
Los Angeles, Louisville, and New Orleans!
As a Southerner and Nashvillian, what is your favorite Southern dish and what do you think makes Nashville so special?
I’m definitely a southern cook. I make one hell of a sweet potato casserole. Butter is my secret ingredient; it’s like the duct tape of the culinary world. I’m also a history buff, and a music nerd. Music history lies around every corner here in Nashville.
What is your biggest food-related pet peeve?
I wish large pizzas were larger.
If you could be on a reality cooking show, what would it be?
Sometimes I fantasize about being on, "The Great British Bake Off." Once when I was sick, I binge watched an entire season in one day. I craved chocolate eclairs for a week.
Tell us a little about your song,"Cry Baby,” that just released.
I left school and officially moved to Nashville when I was 15 years old. The stages of bars and honky tonk dives became my classroom. I wanted to write a song that captured the way I felt as a teenager in those neon nights. My friend Emma Grandillo put together a writing session with Frank Romano, and the three of us sat down together in the writing room. This song came together like magic! The video for “Cry Baby” was produced by Stormlight Pictures and directed by Logen Christopher. Frank also plays guitar in the video, which was actually shot in his living room. He has the coolest house.
Do you have any interesting stories about how fans have been affected by your music?
When “Burn The Bed” came out, I received hundreds of messages from people who had been through a similar experience. It was heartbreaking to know that so many people had experienced something so painful, but incredible to connect with them through the song. Spending a lot of time crafting a lyric is important to me because it’s my opportunity to hopefully help or encourage someone, and I’m thankful that songwriting gives me the platform to do that. I love music because it brings people together, and reminds us just how much we all have in common.
Why did you want to become apart of the Song Suffragettes and how has it been for you?
I was invited to play Song Suffragettes for the first time a little over a year ago. I knew that I’d be performing with Kalie Shorr and Lena Stone, but I didn’t know that they would become two of my best friends. Being part of a community of professional women who are genuinely supporting and pulling for one another is an oasis in a challenging industry. The Song Suffragette ladies strive to lift each other up, and that’s a beautiful thing to be a part of!
What is your favorite song among all the songs you have written or recorded and what's the story behind it?
Oh my goodness, I’m not sure I could choose a favorite song! The truth is that it’s usually whichever song I’ve most recently finished. My friends tease me because every time I finish a new one, I always announce that it’s the best song I’ve ever written. I’m way too enthusiastic sometimes, and definitely not objective when it comes to my own music.
What’s the best advice you have ever gotten from another musician?
Grand Ole Opry legend Jack Greene took me on as his duet partner when I was 16. I learned so much growing up backstage at the Grand Ole Opry on the weekends, and touring the country performing with icons like Little Jimmy Dickens, Porter Wagoner, and Jeannie Seely. That was my version of high school. Jack gave me a lot of great advice, and taught me everything I know about entertaining. He said “love the audience, and they’ll love you back.” I’m not perfect, but I truly do love people, and I hope that listeners can hear that in my music.
Did you go to concerts growing up and can you remember your first concert?
My first concert was probably watching my family onstage as a kid. I joined my family’s band, Heaven Sent, when I was just a little girl. We played churches and county fairs all over the midwest, but the family band was around long before I was.
If you could travel back in time, what advice would you give your 15-year-old self?
Stay in school!
What do you have planned for the rest of 2018 and where can fans stay up-to-date with you?
Keep your eyes and ears open for lots of new music, coming very soon! Follow me @CandiCarpenter on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, and keep checking CandiCarpenter.com for updates! Thank you so much for your support!
ABOUT CANDI CARPENTER:
"I write my best songs when men piss me off," says Candi Carpenter, whose fiery first single, "Burn The Bed" tells the story of a scorned woman's cheating husband. Her aching, soulful voice has drawn comparisons to Janis Joplin and Patsy Cline, while critics have dubbed her "the modern Loretta Lynn" of country songwriting.
"A lot of people say I have a crazy story," she says. "Maybe I do, but I think we're all messed up in our own way. That's why I write about the bad, the ugly, and the good that makes it all worthwhile. The hurt, and the healing, and everything in between."
Candi's musical roots are buried deep in memories of stained glass windows and dog eared hymnals, as she toured the midwest with her family's gospel band. At age 11, she crashed a Vince Gill concert by writing "Can I yodel for you?" on the back of a ticket stub. Later that year, she signed her first production deal in Nashville. She traded high school for a small room at The Shoney's Inn downtown, and the stages of honky tonk dives like Tootsies and The Broken Spoke Saloon became her classroom. She performed every night until the bars closed down, hiding from the police in the bathrooms.
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