Hey everybody, this is Samantha! I'd like to share with you who I am, where I’m from, and where my passion for music has taken me so far in life.
It all started on December 17, 1989 in Atlanta, Georgia... that would be the day I was born! I grew up in suburban Marietta with two hard working, extremely loving parents. I studied hard in school to make straight A’s and was in to music and arts. Music has always been a large part of my life, but it wasn’t until I was 13 years old that I knew it was my calling. On the weekends, my parents used to sneak me backstage where ever they could, and my dad would sweet talk the band into letting me sing a few songs with them. My first performance with a live band was in front of about 500 people at Cowboys Dancehall in Kennesaw, Georgia. I will never forget that feeling. After graduating high school, I opted out of enrolling in a university, and pursued music full time.
My first gig was with a local cover band. I stepped in as the lead vocalist, and started taking mandolin lessons. Mando didn’t last long after my teacher put a guitar in my hands. I learned a few chords, wrote my first song, then started playing local writers’ rounds and open mic nights. When I was 19, I took three of my best songs to Nashville and recorded my first demo with signed Warner artist James Otto’s band. Those songs recieved regular airplay on Atlanta’s local programs for regional Georgia artists, and I decided to use that momentum to start my own band. I cut my teeth locally and sometimes even in neighboring states for several years thereafter. During that time, I entered the Texaco Country Showdown and advanced all the way through the competition’s regional level. I played dive bars, house parties, honky tonks, amphitheaters, fairs, and festivals. We opened up for several national acts too... John Anderson, Montgomery Gentry, Restless heart, Gary Alan, Terri Clark, Gretchen Wilson, The Band Perry, Trace Adkins, and Joe Nichols among others.
In 2012, I signed a year long contract with a boutique style publishing house in Nashville, BNG/Sharp Objects Music Group. I traveled back and forth from Atlanta to Nashville, playing live shows at home and writing in town. They set me up for monthly cowrites with folks that have had cuts with the likes of the Dixie Chicks, George Strait, Lee Ann Womack, Blake Shelton, Pam Tillis, and Randy Travis. I learned so much that year, and it inspired me to start transitioning into the Nashville scene.
Over the next two and half years, I worked hard booking my band and working two or three other jobs at a time to save my money to move to town. I worked in retail, as a cocktail waitress, as a barista, and as a CrossFit Level 1 coach. On the weekends, I loaded up my PA and drove all around the state of Georgia playing my gigs. I also worked in some solid studios in Nashville, recording an EP under the ear of Matt Rovey (Alan Jackson, Craig Campbell, Easton Corbin) at Watershed Studios and demoing a handful of my songs at County Q with some of the top session players in town. From those experiences, I developed a mature business sense. Overall, there is no substitute for hard work and a firm belief in yourself and your values are the strongest weapons in your arsenal.
By the end of 2015, I was determined to up and move to Nashville. It happened fast, and when I first moved to town, I knew a total of three people. I remember sitting on the floor in my empty apartment with my puppy and a wall of boxes, crying and wondering what in the world I was supposed to do next?! By the time 2016 was in swing, I was working long days as a waitress and CrossFit coach then spending my nights out listening to bands and meeting fellow musicians. It was then that I met guitarist Rod Riley at Music City Bar and Grill. After months of listening to his playing, a friend talked me in to getting up to sing “Rose Colored Glasses” with him at the Nashville Palace. He put a good word in for me with the head of booking, John Taylor, at Tootsies, and later that spring, John gave me a shot!
Ever since, I have been on a regular rotation, working for Tootsies World Famous Orchid Lounge, Rippys, and Honky Tonk Central. I feel beyond blessed to make a great living playing to a packed house every day. While working hard in the Broadway circuit, I am also focusing even more on my writing. My next goal is to get out into the writers’ rounds and meet as many talented writers as I can. I want to record and share more of my own music, and I want to be the best artist that I can be!