Heather Longstaffe is an incredibly talented singer songwriter from Canada living in Nashville and is doing really good things. I was blown away by what I heard and knew I had to interview her for the site. She doing good things and will go very far. So read on.
1. How did did you get into music?
Growing up I always had original melodies running through my head. It took me awhile to realize that not everybody else did. The songwriter part of me was just very natural like that, sort of undeniable. I remember singing with my mom in church as a little girl, I did my first musical when I was 7, and my first studio experience was at 10. I was one of the very lucky few who never had to “decide” what I would do with my life, it was a no brainer.
2. What was the inspiration for the new songs?
I moved to Nashville from Canada by myself almost 2 years ago, and I have been single for 3 years. Those two things combined allowed me to reach a new level of independence. I wanted to use that in my songs. I wasnt in love, so I didnt want to write about love. Infact, I was open to writing anything BUT love songs. I also made the decision to just be honest to who I am, even if that scares people. I fall somewhere in between Country and Pop and so many people have tried to push me to one side or the other. But Im more than okay to sit in the swampy-water middle. I wanted a dance-ability to my up-tempos and a vulnerability to the ballads. I either want to make your feet move, or stab you in the heart.
3. How was the recording process different to earlier recordings?
Im in pre-production stage for my album right now. We have demo’d a lot of the songs in Nashville and the level of talent that you work with in this town is unparalleled. My songs truly came to life in a way I had never seen. And it happens FAST.
4. What inspired the video clip skin & bones?
That video was literally shot with my pink nikon camera sitting on a chair filming me against a wall in the bedroom I was renting. The candle and the chandelier parts were shot in Toronto in my publishers apartment when I was looking after her place. I was bored!
5. Who have you enjoyed playing with recently?
I did a really fun Writers Round at the CCMA’s in Saskatoon recently. Kira Isabella, Josh Macumber and The Stellas were a part of it. The audience was amazing and I just felt a really good vibe between all of us onstage. Plus the Stellas told a really funny story about poutine.
6. What is the scene like where you live?
Nashville is home to the best of the best. there is music everywhere and every second person you meet is a musician. I think the coolest thing about Nashville, is that we are all really from somewhere else.
7. How does social networking help you as an artist?
Social networking is the new word of mouth, the new street team. Those things still exist, but the online population is much bigger than the crowds we could have expected to reach without it. It is crucial to gaining new fans and getting exposure in parts of the world where you may not yet be able to get to physically. I cant tell you how much it helps every time somebody shares a video of mine or tweets about me. Thank you to those people!!
8. If you could work with any one who would it be?
Mutt Lange! and Shania Twain! when they were happy and married preferably..
9. How did it feel to get a publishing deal?
Validating. Somebody was finally saying “youre not wasting your time, youre actually good at this”. It came at one of my lowest times, and turned things around for me.
10. What is next for yourself?
Im going to keep working on my own album as well as writing for other artists. I want to start playing more shows in the New Year, I am starving for it, and people need to hear these new songs!!
11. How do you find being an independent artist?
It is not easy. But it is gratifying when you reach an accomplishment and you did it on your own. Im grateful for my fans who push me to keep going when its hard. Their messages and support mean everything to me!