Interview : Getting to know new country music duo TOWNE

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TOWNE are an up and coming Country Music duo based in Nashville who consist of Jon Decious and Steevie Steeves ( best name ever). I stumbled across them when they started promoting their current single The One I Love. There was and is quite a lot of buzz about the single across social media via various publications, so like a cat, my curiosity got the better of me and I had to listen to the song. Well…I am so glad that I did because The One I Love blew me away.

From the very start, The One I Love is wonderfully captivating. The intro instantly grabs your attention and  Steevie’s vocals are highly infectious with her stunning, graceful and passionate tone.  Steevie, in my opinion, has one of the most unique and gifted voices that I have heard in a while which makes her truly stand out. I love the fact she combines a light rap style with emotional singing in this song.

The song is so well written both sonically and lyrically, making it one of the most exciting songs in country music today. I would describe the song as alternative country pop with a bit of a classic rock twist.

Through my love of the song and intrigue of the duo, I caught up with them to get to know them a little bit better.

I thoroughly enjoyed this interview and hope you do too.

Please check out their music below and follow them on Twitter and Instagram.

Games We Play – EP by Towne
https://itun.es/gb/UI72ab

@TOWNEmusic https://www.instagram.com/townemusic/

Enjoy!

Interview

Hi, thanks so much for taking the time to do this interview today.

Our pleasure- thank you for having us!

How are you both, have you been busy?

We’re both wonderful! Yes, we’ve been very fortunate as of late to be really busy…We wouldn’t want it any other way.

Could you introduce yourselves and tell us a little bit about your background and what got you into music and songwriting?

She’s Steevie Steeves and I’m Jon Decious. We’re both from rural, mostly farming, towns (Steevie’s from Blairsville, PA and I’m from Monticello, KY). We both got into and were drawn to music at an early age. Steevie started performing in theatre and musicals in school which led her to being in a classic rock band and I had pretty much the same story, except replace “theatre and musicals” with middle school and high school garage bands.

Eventually, we each started writing songs and were serious enough about making a career out of music that we wound up in Nashville…as neighbors…long story short…

How would you describe TOWNE?

Our sound is like what you get when you combine an amazing pop singer/songwriter with a hillbilly singer/songwriter. It’s not backwoods country and it’s not big city pop; it’s right down the middle…It’s how we got the name “TOWNE”.

You have an EP out now called Games We Play – how would you describe this EP sonically and lyrically?

Lyrically, it’s the story of the two of us. We’re neighbors that met 2,000 miles from home, that became best friends, then became lovers, then broke up, and somehow became best friends again. There’s a lot of ups and downs in it but there’s also a lot of magic, too.

Sonically, it goes back to the previous question. Personally, I think it sounds like a record that two kids from small towns with big dreams would make. There are pop elements, for sure, but the truth is we’re from where we’re from so there are always country elements at the root of everything we do.

How hard was it to select songs for the EP and were there any that didn’t make the EP that you wish had?

Honestly, we shot straight from the hip with this EP. The songs were all fairly new when we recorded them, and we wanted it to be that way- we made it straight from the heart and didn’t ask too many questions.
With that said, there are always songs we wish had made the EP, but there are always “next records” they can go on.

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The One I Love has a fun fact story behind it, right? Can you please tell us a bit more on that?

Of course (I’m guessing/hoping that you’re referring to the Mavis Staples story…). Shortly after we’d written the song (about something ENTIRELY different), I’d opened a New York Times and read an interview with Mavis Staples. She talked about several topics, including a new album and her family band, The Staples Singers, but what really stuck with me was her words about Bob Dylan. She went in to how the two had met at the ’62 Newport Folk Fest, shared a kiss, fell in love, and how he’d asked her to marry him, but she said “no” because she didn’t believe a white man and black woman could ever be accepted in America, at the time, as man and wife.

Then she said something along the lines of “to this day he’s still the one true love of my life. He’s still the one”.
It felt like a sign from the universe telling us that we needed to do the song so I immediately called Steevie, and we decided that we had to record, “The One I Love”.

You made a great video for the single, what was it like to shoot and was it the first video you ever shot? Who directed it?

Thank you, yeah, we’re really proud of that video and how it turned out. The director’s name is Justin Clough. He’s an insanely talented guy. He also shot the video for Brother’s Osborne’s “21 Summer”, one of our recent faves.

It wasn’t the first video we’ve ever shot but it’s the first video we’ve ever made that had a little bit of a budget and that one of our friends didn’t direct. The video was really fun and emotionally intense to shoot. The actors and especially the actress, Rachel Jeanette’s, performances were breathtaking. Definitely an unforgettable day for the both of us and anyone else that was there.

Do you have a favourite song off the EP?

Collectively, I think we’d both vote “The One I Love” as our favorite song because it’s touched so many people in so many different ways. It’s the first song either of us have written that’s affected people on so many different levels.

We also love “The Rest” a lot. That was a late addition that turned out beautifully…we really had no idea what to expect, but it went above and beyond all of our expectations.

Describe a typical day of songwriting.

If it’s just the two of us, there’s rarely anything “typical” about it. I’ll sometimes come in with a guitar riff or a title that I think Steevie will like and then it’s off to the races. Then, after a few hours of singing, arguing back and forth, and laughing we’ll walk out of the room with, what usually, resembles a song. After that, we’ll listen back to it a few days later and, if we like it, we’ll go back and make some edits-sometimes not- and then “POOF” we’ve got a song. It’s never typical because it’s all still so magical every time…it never gets old.

What do you enjoy most about being on the road?

We both live for meeting new people and making new friends and there’s no place like the road to do that, day in and day out.

What is your proudest moment of being in TOWNE?

Personally, my proudest moment of being in TOWNE was the day we got publishing deals and Steevie got to quit her waitressing job. I’ve never seen her so happy

If you could co write with any writer or writers, who would it be?

We admire and love the work of so many that this is a nearly impossible question…Sia, Ryan Tedder, and Chris Stapleton are a few that come to mind.

What are bugles and why do you hate them?

Oh man! You actually read our Twitter?! Haha. Bugles are a snack in America that are basically chips but they’re shaped like mini-cones…and Steevie hates them.

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Who are you backing for album of the year at the Grammys?

Sturgill, for sure. I mean, did you SEE that SNL performance?! How could you not?

What jobs did you have or have had before turning to music? Have you had any awful jobs or fun, odd ones?

Steevie was a waitress, a barista, and worked at an animal shelter, just to name a few. I’ve filed X-Rays, cashiered at a CVS, and was a farmhand.

What is the funniest thing that has happened to you recently?

I’ve seen some undercover boomerang videos of myself that Steevie has posted on our Instagram that have made me die…they’re funny though.

What was the last song you listened to?

The last song I listened to was a demo of a new song of our’s called, “Quit Them Cigarettes”.

What artists are you listening to in country music in general at the moment?

Brent Cobb, Sturgill, Eric Church, Travis Meadows

Will we get to see you on tour here in the UK?

We sure hope so!

Thanks so much and I hope to see you in the UK soon.

Thank you so much for having us. We appreciate it. We’ll be sure to bring you a bag of Bugles when we come.

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