Andrea Nixon Series No.1
By CA Marshall
Spotlight Interview | Andrea Nixon
August 25th 2016
‘Diary Of A Housewife’
Photography by: Candice Anne Graphics & Photography
*Note: Full photo spread will appear when the Artists’ album is released in November 2016
SMC – Hello Andrea! We feel blessed to have been a part of your musical journey with your upcoming Album, ‘Diary Of A Housewife’. Can you first familiarize our readers with you: tell us a little about your background in music, where you’re from, and how your upcoming album relates to all of this….
Andrea – Hi Candice. So glad to have you on the team! I began singing as a child as a way to connect my love of words to my love of music. Even as a young girl, I had a heart for country music, singing songs like “ The Greatest Man I Never Knew” by Reba McEntire as a ten year old and loving the depth of it and the insight it offered into the human experience. I also began to write poems at age 8 and continued to do so into my adult years. Nine years ago, after the birth of my daughter I began singing in public with my husband encouragement. Singing for a living was a dream I tucked away at the tender age of 11, after my father’s passing. He was my biggest cheerleader and doing it without it seemed impossible. While dabbling in live performance at the Second Cup open stage, I began to meet songwriters and realized for the first time that this was something regular people do. So, I set out to reframe my poems as songs and make them sing. In 2014, after accumulating a couple dozen songs, I began to seek out a Producer for the album. I know I needed development so I sought out Bobby Cameron who has since become a friend, Mentor, Producer and Co Writer on these tracks. Our goal has been to create something completely authentic and yet commercial viable. Something that speaks of my personal stories in a way that resonates with and connects to others in our shared experiences.
SMC – So we worked with you on the photo stills for your album, can you tell us about the new Lyric video that was just released today and how you feel about the produced results?
Andrea – I am really thrilled with it! I had scouted a location South of town called the Fowler Farm for both our photo shoot and videography for the lyric video. The look for both is cohesive as they were both done at the same place over the same evening. The pictures you took along with the video both feel really authentically me and representative of my journey. The photography was fantastic and I couldn’t be happier with it! Morgan Gold produced the video and I am thrilled with the results. Terri Esteves of Razor Technique did a wonderful job with make up as well!
SMC – You refer to your ‘team’ – who is a part of the success so far behind your upcoming single ‘Innerglow’ (pre order now, release date: September 12th, 2016)?
Andrea – The song was written by myself and Bobby Cameron. He also Produced the track and played guitar on it. Lindsay Bueckert played bass and Chad Melchert was on drums. Background vocals were done by Aurora Lenihan and harmonies by Samantha King. The song was recorded at and mixed by Stew Kirkwood of Sound Extractor and mastered at Wreckhouse Mastering by Peter Letros. Photography and branding are courtesy of Candice Anne Graphics & Photography. Make up was done by Terri Esteves of Razor Technique. Wardrobe was purchased at Rowena. Additional outfits were purchased at Revolution Boutique and Welsh’s sponsored the clothing which was also worn in the “You Didn’t Make Me” video shoot. Hair was courtesy of Mousy Browns.
SMC – How are you feeling about the branding/vibe for this album in relation to previous work you have created?
Andrea – I feel that the branding is elevating the project and bringing together a look and vibe that feels distinctively me and that I am proud to bring to market. In the past, I struggled with finding a cohesive look and feel that showcases my particular perspective, but I feel I am now able to do so with your help!
SMC – On the way out to the photo shoot, we spoke about the challenges with trying to get the word out about new music on the horizon (associated with all Artists), can you tell us what has been your biggest challenge?
Andrea – Honestly, the biggest challenge has been financial. Labels may invest 500,000 dollars to take an artist to market. I have invested a significant amount in creating a fantastic and competitive recordings and videos, but the marketing money is simply not there. So I work in teaching, tutoring and live performance and continue to invest in my career in order to reach my demographic but I’m working with a $500 dollar/month budget and competing with others who have much larger ones. I don’t feel disheartened though. You do what you have to, right? And I believe the songs speak for themselves!
SMC – Who has been your biggest supporters (aside from family) with your music?
Andrea – Starlight Music Chronicles have been one of my biggest supporters since the launch of my debut single and video, “You Didn’t Make Me.” I’ve also been blessed to receive the support of Chasing Your Dream Radio who has continued to share my single and video over the last year. In the world of commercial radio, I’m been supported by Wally Desjarlais of CFWE FM, Jerad Bowes in Whitecourt, Jenn Dalen, who now works for KG Country and Tyler out at Big West Country as well as Steph Hopf in High River. I also got the support of radio in Kelowna and Owen Sound with the first single. Laurie Brown of Porch Swing Entertainment has offered much insight as a music industry consultant as have Bob D’Eith and Danny Fornier. The song also did well with CBC Searchlight. Behind all this industry success, was a loyal group of fans who have championed my cause. As far as live music performance goes, I have been fortunate enough to work with local talents Barry Westerlund and Aurora Lenihan as well as the members of the amazing local band, The Give Em Hell Boys.
SMC – Are you able to discuss some details about the album that fans can get excited about?
Andrea – The album is a concept album that is going to be called “Diary of a Housewife.” It aims to speak for and represent those of us in the middle the busiest times of our lives. Balancing kids, finances, marriages and still find contentment and peace within ourselves while avoiding getting lost in the shuffle. The songs reflect of life’s losses and victories with an emphasis on the resilience and hope that carry us through.
SMC – We noticed that you are promoting some nice contests on your social media – tell us a little about that and what fans can expect coming up …..
Andrea – The big one right now is the Road to Radio Promotion. As some of you may know, sales tracking is essential to let radio know that a song is worth taking a risk on. So, in order to encourage people to make that purchase and spread the work about the song, I’m asked people to take a screenshot of their purchase page and tag me in a related post. In doing so, they are entered into a draw to win a free house concert at the end of the campaign, which wraps Sept. 19th. All pre-order sales and first week of sales numbers are added together and help an artist chart on the iTunes charts, which is the ultimate goal. I’ve also started a Facebook Road to Radio event page, where I share behind the scenes info and keep my listeners informed on new developments.
SMC – When you wrote ‘Innerglow’, what was the thought process behind it? How do you build your stories behind your lyrics?
Andrea – I story board all of my songs when initially developing them. I create three boxes for each of the verses and I usually begin with the concept behind the chorus, which is the idea that unifies it all. For this song, Bobby and I worked on a word that would capture the way you see the people you love. After running through an exhaustive list, we settled on a wholly new work, Innerglow, which is actually two words re-framed as one. When you can’t find the perfect work, you make one! I then went and began to write those verses around experiences I’ve had when I saw someone who lit up the room. The muses were my husband and my son, Jason and Austin. I wanted to start the song with a description of the first time I saw my husband and pick up on how difficult an intimidating it can be to fall in love and take a risk on new love. The song comes full circle with the wedding and of course, seeing the same spark in my son as I had in his father.
SMC – Are there any instruments that you can play that fans aren’t aware of?
Andrea – My primary instrument is voice though I dabble in guitar and keys, mostly just for my own pleasure and education.
SMC – What do you think is the best thing about being an independent Artist? We hear a lot about the challenges, what are the perks for you?
Andrea – The perk of being independent is the flexibility it offers and the opportunity to project an artistic vision and a recorded product that is truly authentic.
SMC – Can you tell us about one of your most favorite venue experiences while performing live?
Andrea – My performance highlight to date was my single launch at the Draft, which had since closed. A local promoter, Terrylynn Kuhl, stepped in to help get the word out that a country band would be playing and the huge room was full to capacity. As I watched the two steppers fill the dance floor and offer me compliments on both my originals and my choice of traditional county covers, I was thrilled to death! The room was also full of the people who I grew up with as well as family and new friends I have met through the local music scene. It was one of those pinch me moments for sure!
SMC – As far as local Artists go, who is your fave?
Andrea – That’s really hard. Too many to name. I gotta say though that I tend to find a way to collaborate with the people I admire. That being said, Bobby Cameron is on that list, along with Barry Westerlund, Aurora Lenihan and the Give Em Hell Boys. I’m also a huge fan of Shauna Spect, Ben Williams and Ken Stead. There are so many more, too many to name.
SMC – Would you ever consider a duet with anyone in the future? Are there going to be any on your new album? If so, who would that be?
Andrea – There are no duets on this album but I love to put my voice next to local troubadour Barry Westerlund’s. There could be a duet in future with him for sure. If I got the chance to work with someone in Nashville, it would be without a doubt Chris Stapleton.
SMC – Do you feel the ‘new look’ (vintage housewife) reflects the person you are today? How does it?
Andrea – I’m kinda an old soul. I’ve felt like I was born in the wrong decade my whole life and I’m traditional. I love my husband and my children and I take care of them. I’m a caretaker by choice not out of some backwards traditionalism. I’m also proud to be. So, is there such thing as a feminist housewife. Yup. I’m one!
SMC – What genre of music do you secretly like that no one knows about (aside from country)?
Andrea – 90s Hip Hop, shhhhh!
SMC – So when can we expect the full album to release?
Andrea – The full album will be released in November!! Watch for it!
SMC – Will there be any more single releases prior to the album launch?
Andrea – We’re not sure though we are flirting with the idea of putting out a Bonus Christmas track.
SMC – Are you already working on new music?
Andrea – Yup! I’m working on a new tune called “Wasted on the Worry.” The concept is don’t get “drunk” on the worry, don’t let it stop you. And don’t “Waste it!” that being you life on the worry either. That’s all I got so far.
SMC – Where would be your ideal venue to perform your album launch in?
Andrea – Ideally, I would do it at the Winspear. Wouldn’t that be amazing?
SMC – Final question: can you tell us some fun/unique facts about yourself that fans would love to know about you?
Andrea – Here is the complete answer: I love to wear pajamas and I enjoy making pirogies and pie! Breakfast for supper is the best and hot wings are my absolute favourite food. And I love my family and friends fiercely and fully. If anyone tries to hurt my children or my husband, they’ll have to go through me first. I may be small in size but I’m a fighter for both the people and causes that I love and support. I learned that from my mom, Theresa Esteves, who is the quintessential Mama Bear! Speaking of causes, I support Little Warriors with branded merchandise I sell at shows with all proceeds going to this organization that does such important work!
SMC – thank you for the time you too for this interview Andrea!
SMC – You’re welcome. I had a blast!
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