As beautiful art often is, Brit Taylor’s debut album, Real Me was born from a string of losses that left this Eastern Kentucky native longing for the simpler days of her childhood. After moving to Nashville at only 17, she earned a college degree, signed a publishing deal, bought a house in the country, got married and life was on track. Things changed and she found her way out of some dark days through music, faith and family. Brit recently played our Finally Friday From Home series, you can see it under the video tab here at wmot.org. I asked Brit about the songs and sounds on Real Me, co-writes and Betty Boop.
AnaLee: The sounds really match the stories on this record. It’s raw and trippy, but completely makes sense in a sort of modern psychedelia meets traditional twang way. If that makes any sense at all! It has an organic kind of feel, so I’m wondering if you went in with a vision of how you wanted the album to sound or if came to life in the studio and if you would, tell us a little about your collaborators.
Brit: Thank you! Mission accomplished! I definitely went into the studio with all my musical influences in mind. I wanted the record to sound, exactly how you put it, psychedelia meets traditional county and REALLY TWANGY! I wanted to explore new sounds and be adventurous and, luckily, I had a producer with an open mind who was willing to go there with me. We both had a lot of fun making this record. Dave Brainard is such a wizard in the studio. He’s not afraid to take all day to get it right, and I love that about him.
AnaLee: You’ve released four singles leading up to the November 20th release of your debut album, Real Me and although each one stands out on its own, I can definitely hear a sonic and lyrical theme happening. The use of the Betty Boop cartoon for the visualizer video on the first single, “Waking Up Ain’t Easy”, is so good it’s as if it was created for your song! Those clips have to be from the early thirties or so! Tell us about that song and its really creative video.
Brit: Thank you! I hold that visualizer close to my heart. The idea popped in my head one day. I could just see this black-and-white cartoon and a crying girl, and I heard my song playing. I called a few companies and realized quickly animation was out of the question for this indie girl. They’re quite costly and deservingly so! So, I thought, Betty Boop! There has to be some old footage from the ‘20s and ‘30s that are in public domain, and I was right. Then it took around a year to find someone who was willing and who could actually pull it off. Wyatt Scott Kassin with WSK Productions nailed it. He picked the perfect scenes. It was as if the scenes were made for my song. I’m very happy with the way it turned out. I’m glad you like it, too!
AnaLee: “Back In The Fire” has a great groove and a real Bobbie Gentry vibe. Having been a songwriter signed to a publishing deal, I imagine you were no stranger to co-writing. What was it like to sit down with Pat McLaughlin and Dan Auerbach?
Brit: I wrote professionally for 4 years with a publishing deal and truly never quite experienced anything like I did when writing with Dan and Pat. It was a completely different vibe. We just grooved and wrote and laughed. It felt like play. No one was in our ears telling us to sound like this or like that. We just talked about the music we loved, started playing a groove and let the lyrics fly. Dan and Pat are such great writers individually but they also make one hell of a team. I’m really lucky to know them both.
Brit Taylor’s new album, Real Me is out Friday, November 20th.
Brit Taylor, “Waking Up Ain’t Easy”
Brit Taylor, “Back to The Fire”
Ana Lee is on middays at WMOT, and is also the host of The Local Brew Hour, which airs Sundays at 7am and Mondays at 7pm on 89.5 WMOT and wmot.org.