Based in the undisputed home of country music, budding singer/songwriter Betsy Lane is gaining fans not only in Nashville but here in the UK!
With a prestigious songwriting degree to her name, the 24 year-old has been serious about her career from a young age. From making up songs with her dad in their kitchen to playing the renowned Bluebird Cafe, music has always been a part of her life.
I had the pleasure of chatting with Betsy about all things music, including her latest release, a self-titled EP with thousands of streams across all platforms.
Hi Betsy! It’s amazing to finally speak with you, we love your music! Could you tell us a little bit about your new EP?
You are so sweet to say that. When I started working on this project, I wanted it to represent who I am as a songwriter and an artist. I don’t feel like my music really fits into the box of what country music is today so I started doing my research. I spent months listening to old Shania Twain, Alison Krauss, some Hunter Hayes, Vice Gill, The Wreckers – really anyone who built their albums from real, acoustic instruments. I am so proud of the way it turned out. The main goal of this project was the maintain the integrity & dignity of what country music was founded on, while stretching the boundaries to make it modern enough to compete with where the country market is right now.
Do you have a favourite lyric from any of the tracks? What does it mean to you?
I don’t know if I have a favourite lyric, but the song “Lookin’ At Rings” makes me tear up every time I listen to it. Am I allowed to say that about one of my own songs? hahaha. It’s just the honest truth & it’s real. I feel so blessed to be able to put that feeling into words to share with the world because I know I’m not the only person who has ever felt that way.
Growing up in Nashville must’ve meant you were surrounded by country music from a young age, do you have any musical relatives that have inspired you?
This is always one of my favourite questions to answer. My dad was the best when it came to this kind of stuff. He would be preparing us something simple like peanut butter & jelly sandwiches and would make up a song about it on the spot and we’d all start to sing along until we ended up laughing. There were songs about belly-buttons, pyjamas, bath-time, he even wrote a song for me when I was scared to get my tonsils out! There has always been creativity flowing out of him and it’s contagious.
You’ve played so many venues in and around Nashville, including the famous Bluebird Cafe! Can you recall the first gig you played?
Oh my gosh, I used to play at an ice-cream shop in my neighbourhood every Friday night for HOURS. My friends would show up to eat ice cream and listen to me sing. It wasn’t paid but I did get free ice cream at the end of it – so truthfully I was pretty happy.
You graduated from Belmont University with a degree in songwriting in 2016, that’s an incredible achievement! When did you first realise that you wanted to pursue a career as a singer/songwriter?
Thank you for saying that! I have so many kind things to say about the songwriting program at Belmont, it really shaped me and helped me grow into the writer I am today. Truthfully, I didn’t realize that being a songwriter could be a real career because it was just a hobby to me. When I started applying to colleges Belmont was on my list, along with fifteen (yes 15) other colleges. One day I came home from swim practice and my mom said “Bets, I did some research and there’s a songwriting program at Belmont. I think you should apply because I bet you would get in.” I rolled my eyes and told her that songwriting is not a real career… not with a lawyer mom, a dad in finances, and siblings pursuing “real” jobs. But she kept encouraging me. She’d leave little notes on my bed, would always ask to hear my songs after dinner, and eventually persuaded me to apply. I remember screaming when I got my acceptance letter to the program and we all danced around in my parents’ bedroom.
I noticed that you did a giveaway of five hand-painted EP’s to some of your fans, that’s so thoughtful! Is painting another passion of yours?
YES! I love painting. I took a lot of different art classes in high school and a few in college. It has always been so therapeutic for me and just helps me clear my head when nothing else can.
Country music is growing in popularity not only in the UK but around the world! Do you have plans to travel anytime soon?
Yes, sooner than you all think 😉
You released “10 Months Ago”, your first EP, in 2013, so much must have changed for you in the space of five years! As a growing artist, what do you think your next steps are?
It’s a little up in the air right now – as are a lot of things with any independent artist. My main focus is to keep creating, keep playing, and keep connecting with people. We’ll see how it all pans out.
Thank you so much for taking the time to talk with us Betsy, we look forward to seeing what you do next! To finish, could you tell us your plans for the rest of the summer and where we can download your new EP?
My summer plans are always pretty low-key. I don’t have anything exciting going on until late September / October so I’m just resting & refueling before fall gets crazy!
You can download it on iTunes, Amazon, & GooglePlay. You can stream it on Spotify & Apple Music.
You can also listen to Betsy talking through each track on her YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/betsylanemusic). We are very excited to see what she gets up to next!
Interview conducted by Megan Roberts (twitter.com/megwritesalot)