Belles and Gals began back in January and Sarah Darling was the first artist I saw live after the launch when I attended Country2Country 2016 and saw her perform an excellent set on the Saturday. I then saw her again recently in London in a brilliant ‘in the round’ concert alongside Jenn Bostic and Kyshona Armstrong. It would, then, be fair to say that I have become quite a fan and today I am delighted to publish an interview with the lady herself, after I caught up with her last week.
Hi Sarah! Having seen you perform live recently, where you played a number of songs from your new album “Dream Country” it seems that there has been a slight shift in your music and writing. Would you say this is true?
Yes, this is true. Dream Country has been the outcome of me doing everything on my own and experimenting musically. All of the songs are quite personal to me. I find inspiration with the stars, and feel like the dreamer will be drawn to the lyrics. I’ve always wanted to make this record, and I’m excited to share it with the world.
How exciting is it to take this new material on the road, especially seeing as it is receiving such a good reception?
It’s been the most fulfilling experience playing these songs for the first time live. I find that the UK audiences are incredibly engaged. Also I am sharing some very personal stories about chasing my dreams. It takes you through the joy and challenges of that journey. I love connecting to people with that. That’s truly what it’s all about for me!
This is your first release since leaving a major label. It must be good having more control over your output?
It’s honest music from my heart which makes it meaningful. I love knowing both sides. It’s always great to have the freedom to be uniquely you.
Before this year you’d never performed in England before and now you’re becoming quite the regular! Please tell us that this will continue?! And as you have an English husband, can we call you an honorary Brit now?!
You can absolutely call me an honorary Brit! I am also cream tea and marmite lover. I have just wrapped a tour with Ward Thomas and feel quite emotional going home to Nashville. I will be coming back often. I love the UK!
Earlier this year you performed at the Country 2 Country festival. Tell us all about that experience.
C2C was my first introduction to the UK audience and I was blown away by the reception I received. My heart is drawn to releasing music here.
I’ve interviewed a number of artists and many have said that they dream of playing at the Grand Ole Opry. You’ve played there more than 80 times. What makes the place so special?
I have to pinch myself sometimes that I’ve played there over 80 times. When I was a little girl, my grandfather told me you’ve really made it when you get to grace that stage. It’s a big family really. I’m so grateful to be a part of something that makes me a better singer! Greatest stage on earth.
What made you start singing and playing music in the first place? Was there a family influence?
I started singing at 4 years old! It’s all I can ever remember doing. My dad was an amazing drummer and I’m told I have musicians in the family line. Music has always been my outlet, the place that makes me feel the best. I call it a gift from God.
And how do you go about the writing process. Do you have a set way of writing?
I never write the same way twice. I usually will get inspired by something and will figure out a melody that fits the thought. It all has to work together! Sometimes I will pull photos up and write from that.
Tell us what we can expect from Sarah Darling in the coming months, moving into early 2017?
You can expect the release of Dream Country! I’ve never been more excited about a body of work.