Emerging rock star, bree, has taken Nashville by storm and if she has her way… the world is next! She fronts a rockin’ power trio and has just recently released her debut album, “All American Girl.” (Available on iTunes and Amazon) It’s been getting rave reviews and people are happy to see that Rock is still alive and well in the music city! Volume Treble Bass had the pleasure of asking bree a few questions and found her to be as charming and witty as she is talented.
You’ve got a new album out called, “All American Girl.” What can you tell us about that?
All American Girl is a CD of eleven songs I wrote between 2011 and 2012. It was recorded and produced by Bob Ezrin’s engineer Justin Cortelyou at four different Nashville studios from January 2012 to January 2013. Bob is one the most famous Rock producers in history and he’s booked back-to-back far in advance. We would rush into studios such as Anarchy, House Of Blues, The Tracking Room and Black River between artists that Bob and Justin were recording. It was a fantastic experience, the songs were recorded live in the studio with just the three of us and I’m immensely proud of it.
When you first decided you wanted to be a rock star, who were some of the people who inspired you? Both vocally and on guitar?
I have a lot of influences in every decade going back to the 1950s and I could probably fill a page with them. At the top of my lists would be Patsy Cline for vocals, Pete Townshend and Mick Ronson for guitar and Lennon/McCartney for songwriting.
What made you decide to choose a Gibson Flying V as your main guitar?
People like the way the Flying V looks on me, but I love the way it feels and have so since the first time I held one.
In your live shows, you have the swagger of a musician who’s been on the road for years. You own the stage! How did that come to you at such a young age?
It’s all an emotional release. My life was a nightmare from the age of six until I was twenty-one. When I‘m on stage I’m home and I just let go.
Your band really rocks for a three piece, who else is in the band with you?
David Castello is my drummer, but he’s much more than that. I met David on my 21st birthday at a bar in Palm Springs, California. At the time I’d gotten my act together (after being on the street and bouncing around the country for four years after my Dad threw me out of his religious cult in Oregon) and was preparing to start classes at the Art Institute of San Bernardino to become an audio engineer. I was telling David about my plans and he said, “You’re making a mistake. You’ll be on the wrong the side of microphone.” I was shocked because I’d always felt that way, but he was the first person to say it to my face. I’d known the guy for barely fifteen minutes and it felt like I’d known him forever. David is my creative and business partner, and to say he’s my soulmate would not be an exaggeration. Mayrk McNeely is my bassist and brother from another mother. In October 2011 David I were working on our song Forbidden Fruit when we both simultaneously (always a good sign) thought up the idea of an upright bassist playing hard driving Rock-n-Roll. It was fate that we met Mayrk the very next night performing at the Whiskey Bent Saloon. We had to work around his schedule for eighteen months because he was with one of the best Rockabilly bands in Tennessee, The Eskimo Brothers, but he joined us full time July 1st of this year.
You’ve been referred to as “The bastard child of Pete Townsend and Ann Margaret.” Do you think it takes people by surprise when they see someone with the looks of a super model who can rock like you do?
I actually experienced that during our first live show at The High Watt in June 2012. We were playing support for one of my favorite Nashville bands, Kansas Bible Company, and the place was packed. I looked out and saw that there were a lot of musicians in the audience with this huge smirk on their face. I don’t blame them. Most girls who look like I do in this town use their guitar as not much more than a prop. For me, my guitar is an extension of my soul and always will be. It’s just as important to me as my voice. We’re a three piece band for a reason. It’s all about honesty and you can’t hide behind a three piece. Your ass is hanging out there for all the world to see. Do I make mistakes up there getting crazy? Sometimes. Do I rock my ass off? Always. And that’s what it’s all about. No one in that audience was smirking after our first song.
How has Nashville treated you?
GREAT. I really, really love this town and have never met so many wonderfully talented people from all walks of life all in one place. It seems like every week I meet someone from LA or New York who’s moved here because they’ve heard about the buzz. And if you want to find out what Nashville is not about, watch the TV show.
How thrilling was it to win the RAW Nashville Musician Of The Year award?
I’ll never forget it. And I was shocked to find out later on that we swept both the judges and audience votes (kind of a Sally Field moment for me). We played our first RAW show in September 2012. The place was packed and we killed it. That night was when we really came together as a live band and I had no idea we were nominated until the promoter called us while we were rehearsing. We won it on November 15, 2012.
What advice would you give to young girls who want to play the guitar and sing?
No matter what, always be true to yourself. Don’t listen to anyone, but your heart. No one will ever know you as well as you know yourself and that’s what being a true artist is all about. Simply do that and you’ve already made it.
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