In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with singer-songwriter Shelly Fairchild.

We talk about how her career began, how leaving her label for another was the best thing for her career, how being true to yourself is the only way to be… and of course, Dolly Parton.

More on Shelly

Website: https://shellyfairchild.com

Instagram: http://instagram.com/shellyfairchild

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/shellyfairchild

Twitter: https://twitter.com/shellyfairchild

Shelly Fairchild Radio: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/37i9dQZF1E4y4rz1FlHY0B

Apple Music: https://t.co/xcXLf9bWbH

Amazon Music: https://t.co/KJvcqg6WCY

Shelly Fairchild isn’t new to the industry – but she’s far from old news.

A staple in the Nashville music community, Fairchild hit the scene to much acclaim with her Columbia Records debut album Ride. The project introduced the young artist’s soulful, gospel-tinged brand of alternative country and spawned a Top 40 hit with “You Don’t Lie Here Anymore.” She toured with some of the biggest names in the format, including Rascal Flatts, Keith Urban and Tim McGraw, and began to dig her roots in the industry. She again found success in her second release, Ruby’s Money, which came steeped in a thick groove with elements of funk – but it was Buffalo, her crowd-funded 2017 release, that marks a milestone in her life and career. 

“I’m sincerely grateful for both the good and bad things that have happened in my life. Everyone that I’ve met and worked with over the 20 years that I’ve lived in Nashville has made me who I am, and I will always carry that in my soul,” says Fairchild. 

The Jackson, Miss. native started the project in May 2014, launching a PledgeMusic campaign in the hopes that she would find support of her endeavor – and after reaching her goal in just two days, she realized she had. Fairchild’s 3rd full length studio record was fully funded and buoyed by the faith of her friends, family and fans.  

The next two years saw Fairchild working with some of her most inspirational industry co-writers. “House on Fire,” an aching ballad reflecting on the weight of one’s past, was the first song that she remembers finishing and feeling confident that it deserved a spot on her record. Co-written by Fairchild along with Lisa Carver and Travis Meadows, the track features subtle but classic country instrumentation and the soft harmonies of one of her favorite bands, the Fairground Saints. 

From there the singer/songwriter continued to pen songs that she felt carried an important message to either herself or the world around her.  Guided by Jeremy Lister and Carey Ott, Fairchild recorded eight of her co-written tracks for the record that would become known to her fans as ‘Buffalo‘.  Though she tackled some serious topics in her writing, Fairchild felt extremely uplifted by her own work and that of others. 

“I love singers and songwriters,” she smiles.  I love to have camaraderie and deep friendships with great singers and musicians. I feel like our community in Nashville is so rich and some of my favorite voices are my friends. I am so fortunate to have worked with so many great artists on Buffalo like Wendy Moten, Lucie Silvas, K.S. Rhoads, Fairground Saints, and of course Carey & Jeremy. My heart felt like it was going to explode by the end of the recording process.”

Not only does Buffalo emphasize its diversity by featuring guest vocalists, but it also highlights a wide array of musical styles and influences. 

“There are a lot of different elements to the music that I make,” says Fairchild. “How do you describe some of the best bands that you know? They ended up on pop radio or on country radio, but are they really that kind of act? I have so many influences and I love having them show up in my songs. It feels like that kind of music lasts longer, because it feels real.” 

As for the name of her last full length album to date, Fairchild says, “In many Native American cultures, the buffalo is a symbol of gratitude and abundance. I am from Choctaw ancestry and I completely connect with the idea that though buffalo carry a lot on their shoulders, their horns are always pointing up to the sky. There’s always this hope that the weight will be lifted.”

A longtime hidden gem in the trove of Nashville musicians, Fairchild continues to keep her head and her heart pointing up to the sky. Between singing background vocals for the likes of Jason Aldean, Eric Church, Martina McBride, Crystal Gayle (to name a few), appearing as a regular on The Grand Ole Opry, writing songs for film and television, touring across the country and continuously working on future projects, it is clear she is just getting started. 

“At times I’ve gotten down about my own path, but when I really take a good look at it – it’s not just full of detours and dead ends,” she said. “It’s a wide path, and it’s full of so many spontaneous and amazing things.”

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter James T. Slater to talk about how he got started, and where he is headed in his amazing career.

More on James T. Slater

James is a two time, grammy nominated, piano-playing, bilingual singer-songwriter of Bolivian American descent signed to BMG Music Publishing/Nashville with songs recorded by everyone from Carrie Underwood to Tim McGraw to Willie Nelson and Kenny Chesney.

Website: https://www.jamestslatermusic.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jamestslatermusic/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JamesTSlaterMusic/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXJS8pWNTUt6z_E-dJcW-3g

Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_T._Slater

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with the musically talented husband and wife dynamic duo, Cole Michael Porter and Kendra Porter.

We talk about how they got started in the business, how they met, and how they are able to separate music and their career from everyday life.

More on the Porter Union Band

Porter Union, led by husband and wife, Cole Michael Porter and Kendra Porter, is the result of the two old souls spending the better part of the last decade traveling the country together to play their music everywhere from the dive bars and honky-tonks to festivals and theaters. When you hear the story of Cole and Kendra meeting in a hometown bar, falling in love while writing and playing together, it sounds like a fairy tale built by corporate music row. Luckily, that’s where the comparison stops – you won’t find overproduced, cliche-filled songs here. Their honest approach to songwriting combines raw emotional themes with a traditional country sound to bring the listener into the story. It’s no surprise they’ve shared a stage with a variety of notable artists including many of their own heroes.

Porter Union was recently selected by Travis Tritt as a contestant on REAL COUNTRY on USA Network. 

Website: https://www.theporterunion.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/porterunion/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/porterunion

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PorterUnion

In this episode, Mark Baratto sits down with Key West local Nick Norman to talk about where he started, and where he is going.

We find out how he got started with music and how he is constantly working to “sharpen the sword” of his craft.

This is one of my favorite interviews so far because Nick is so easy to talk to and talks about his career as an open book. 

More on Nick Norman

Immediately recognizable, Nick is known for two distinctive gifts: his soulful voice and infectious smile. It’s hard to imagine that as a young boy he was told he would never be good enough to sing in the church’s youth ensemble in Columbia, South Carolina where he grew up. Today he is truly the man with a golden voice; a talented singer/songwriter who delights his audiences with soulful and inspirational performances. 

It was during his childhood when Nick first acquired his passion for music; his father played guitar, while his mother encouraged him to write. Attending Baptist church exposed him to the awe-inspiring power of the choir. “It was how I first learned that you can truly make people feel what you feel, by believing in what you are singing. They sang from their hearts and that is something I believe that cannot be faked.”

As a young man listening to South Carolina’s emerging musicians of the time, such as Edwin McCain and Hootie and the Blowfish, he was also drawing from the styles of legendary artists including Stevie Wonder and The Band. Inspired by an eclectic array of influences Nick created a sound all his own.

Branching out from his home state he performed on stages all over the southeast, eventually finding his way to the Southernmost City of Key West in 2006. As his solo acoustic shows were drawing crowds, Nick’s songwriting was steadily being fueled by the artistic vibe of the island blending with his native southern roots.  

In 2010,  Nick collaborated with longtime friends Jon Stone & Lee Brice resulting in the recording of his first studio album Hey Cheater. This heartfelt album gave fans a raw look into the personal hardships of Nick’s life by putting his heart on his sleeve in songs such as  “Libba Don’t Call” and “Varela St”. Quickly becoming a Key West anthem, “Good Whiskey” can be heard by local musicians throughout Key West on any given evening. 

He has performed his original music on stages across the country that include City Winery, The Filmore, Listening Room Nashville, Key West Theater, Rams Head, Vina Robles Amphitheatre, Melody Tent and Island Time Music Festival. He has opened for acts such as Lee Brice, Lee Ann Womack, Edwin McCain, The Wailers, and The Doobie Brothers and founded the highly sought after “Sunday Ramble” concert that features local Key West musicians.

Website: https://www.nicknormanmusic.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nicknormanmusic

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/nicknormanmusic