Interview and feature : Twinnie discusses C2C, writing in Nashville and more

If you are looking for the UK’s next best thing in country music then look no further – Twinnie is your girl. It’s not often that I feel really strongly about believing a musicians future will be incredibly successful but when I do, I am in it for the long haul and will follow their career throughout. The last UK act in country music that I knew would go on to do great things were The Shires and now look at them, not that I am responsible, just that I had a feeling and that same feeling goes with Twinnie’s music.

Funnily enough, it was actually The Shires that helped me discover Twinnie. Originally part of a duo with Ben Earle and responsible for co-writing songs on their albums such as Black and White and First Flight Out, Twinnie has an undeniable talent when it comes to songwriting.

Twinnie has it all, the voice, the songwriting skills, beauty and she is very down to earth. Twinnie shouldn’t be a name that people overlook – over the last few years she has been heavily concentrating on her solo career, travelling back and forth from Nashville to write music and also to see her fellow country music friends such as Lucie Silvas, Jon Green and John Osborne, to name a few.

Last year, Twinnie released her debut EP which reached number two in the ITunes country chart and she released the singles Cool and Home. As well as releasing the singles she did an Under The Apple Tree session with Bob Harris showcasing her live music talents. The EP consists of four fantastic country/pop/folk tracks you can read our review of it here

This year, Twinnie performed at C2C Festival for the first time on both Saturday and Sunday creating quite the buzz amongst fans new and old. In the last couple of months, Twinnie has spent a lot of time in Nashville working hard, writing music, recording music and sharing her time out there with us on her socials making us very excited for new music and shows.

Whilst out there, Twinnie has written and worked with some of Nashville’s finest such as Big Machines new published writer Emily Landis, Lucie Silvas, Matthew Perryman Jones (whaat? That is too cool), Kat Higgins, Johan Lindbrandt, Ian Fitchuk, Jamie Kenney, Goldford, Justin Glasgo, Jon Green, Alissa Moreno, Kurtis John, Davis Naish and many more.

As if that wasn’t enough to keep her busy, Twinnie got to live out every country artists dream and perform at The Bluebird Café with Striking Matches, The Bonfires and The Brummies (John and Jacob). So that is basically all our favourites on one stage right? So if you haven’t already, check Twinnie out, if Sarah and Justin say she is an amazing artist then she is an amazing artist. Grand Ole Opry next? I hope so.

I think it is safe to say that Nashville and country music love Twinnie and everyone should get on board before she hits the big time.

Twinnie will be at Cornbury Festival this weekend as part of Cornbury’s Big Finale, then it is no more….. Cornbury have been huge supporters of country music over the years and she will play alongside artists such as Laura Oakes, The Wandering Hearts, Callaghan and Ward Thomas. I can’t wait to be there.

I caught up with Twinnie recently to discuss her first ever C2C experience as well as talking about the UK country community and songwriting.

I hope you enjoy it!

Hi Twinnie, how are you?

I am so good, it is wonderful to finally meet you

You, too. You performed at your first ever C2C this year – how was that experience for you?

To be honest, I wasn’t nervous when I started my first performance, or even before, but then I started to think “Wow, it’s a pretty big crowd”. I thought I would be playing on a little tiny stage and that no one would be there at the time I was on, but it was amazing. What I see is that the festival is getting bigger and bigger every year – this is my first time here, so I didn’t really know what to expect. It was really cool because loads of people came up to me afterwards and asked if I had an EP, telling me they really liked my music and asked when I was doing gigs. People really cared and then I was signing autographs and taking photographs, meeting and greeting people for about 45 minutes after the set, which I didn’t expect.

You didn’t expect it?

No; it was really strange – but wicked, and I had a great time. I also got to hang out with a bunch of my friends like Lucie Silvas and Jon Green. It felt like more of a family occasion so it was really cool.

Were people singing along to your songs?

Yeah, they were actually, especially the songs Cool, and Home – not so much the new ones. There are quite a lot of new ones actually but apart from them, some of the hardcore fans who have been to quite a few of the gigs this year were singing along, which was really nice.

How did playing C2C come to be?

Well, since I have my team in the room, haha, it was something that I wanted to do and I had heard about it each year and it’s my genre of music. Artists I know have always played here such as The Shires, who I have written for. I know Ben really well and I just thought playing C2C would be a great thing to do but I didn’t realise just how big it actually was and that it’s grown so much. I got on the phone to my management and said ‘Please get me on the bill’. I wasn’t expecting it and, at the moment, I am not signed – but everybody playing the stages alongside me is, so it’s really cool to see how supportive the festival is to artists and how everyone gets behind each other; it’s amazing really.

Yes, the organisers are very good at showcasing up and coming artists as well as relatively well known ones. It’s a good mix and good that they place lesser known acts in between known acts to give artists an audience.

What I think is nice is that you’ve got those really massive Country legends mixed in with established artists – Charlie Worsham, for example, I didn’t know him until I got here and it turns out he is friends with pretty much all my friends. C2C hosts new talent that you probably wouldn’t get to see. It reminds me very much of Nashville, where I was earlier this year. Every bar that you go into there has amazing musicians and it is essentially all about the music which is why I love Country music so much.

It’s all about telling a story and I love it when songs do that. I am quite a visual writer with how I see things, too. I think the festival is doing a really good job and now they do shows throughout the year like with C2C Presents.The audience is just getting bigger and bigger because the UK is now blowing up with Country music. It’s a really great platform for me to say that I played C2C and to meet people behind the scenes and around the stage; it’s great finally to put the music to a face and vice versa.

It’s a nice genre to be in; everyone is friendly, they all support each other and no one is, for lack of a better phrase, up themselves.

You took the words right out of my mouth – as there is no need to be, with Country music especially. Most Country artists started out as writers before they became artists, so they understand how much hard work it is; the grind and the craft. It’s something that is happening in this country now and thank God it is, because it is hard being a new artist, especially. At the beginning you don’t get paid any money; in Nashville, they tend to support each other all the time and in the UK Country community it is also like that, which is really nice and you feel like you are part of the family.

It is nice, no competitiveness as such, which is kind of rare.

No. I think, to be honest, there is a place for everyone within the music industry. No one is better at being you than you, so as long as you’re true to yourself and do what you do well, then I don’t see why you should be in competition with anybody.

Quite so.


How was Nashville earlier this year? Were you out there writing with people?

Yeah, I wrote with quite a few people who were at C2C actually, like Lucie Silvas; a fantastic writer called Jeremy Spillman and Travis Meadows, who was like a preacher and has been through everything. I then went to L.A. – I want to live there, haha! I also got to go to the Grammy’s.

Oh that’s cool, did you get to see Maren?

Yeah, I actually got my ticket through Busbee who produced Maren’s album. It was an insane night, because there weren’t any tickets for Adele or Bruno – so that night was literally a dream come true because I saw every artist that I have ever wanted to see. It was really cool, I felt very inspired – it was very surreal.

Your EP, which I love by the way, is full of great songs but I think that my favourite is Looking Out For You – it is so lovely. I just wanted to ask a little bit about that song. You also performed it for Bob Harris’ “Under The Apple Tree Sessions”, right?

Yeah, it was that one – and a Bruce Springsteen cover of Dancing In The Dark.

I wrote Looking Out For You about my grandad who is 81 and is possibly the best man I have ever known. Now because I have written a song about my grandad, my grandma gets really jealous, ha, so I have to say it is about both of them. They are like my mum and dad and have been a massive part of my upbringing and my life – and I miss them like crazy when I am away. I have got quite a big family, and time goes so quick and some of them have kids; my cousins are all married and I realised that I am never going to live with my brother and sister again.

It is those kind of moments which suddenly dawned on me, and really upset me and kind of got me on a trail of thought that oh, God, I remember the things that I used to do with my grandad. It’s like that feeling when you are in the car and sat in the passenger seat and you don’t really care about anything? Life is going by and you feel quite content – that’s the feeling that came to me when I came up with the idea of that song. My grandad, I can’t even describe him, he is just a brilliant gentleman and very kind. No one ever has a bad word to say about him and he is well respected. I really wanted to write a song for him – he was actually ill at the time, quite ill, and I just really wanted to do something for him. He is fine now.

Good.

Yeah, it’s a happy ending.

I am so glad hear it.

Is there an album in the works?

Yes.

Yay!

I literally came back from Nashville with 38 songs so I think I have about three album’s worth, haha. We are going to release maybe another EP first towards the end of the year and then a record which is very, very exciting.

Do you still see Ben from The Shires? Any plans to write with him again?

We wrote the last time I was in Nashville, which was over a year ago now. He has been so busy doing his own thing, like me, that we haven’t – but I did see him at C2C, which was lovely; we write really well together.

Yes, I LOVE Black and White.

I think that may happen again.

Good, well I cannot wait to hear more music from you and catch more shows. Thank you so much for the chat -.and it was great to finally meet you in person.

You are so welcome.


Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s