Nashville TN: Part Two

Continued from Nashville TN: Part One...

Day Five:

I was writing with Matt May (a song writer from London who has had songs placed world wide) and Theo Weedon (a songwriter who is currently in an Artist Project that is working with the BBC) in the morning at Write off the Row with more tea and yummy snacks! Both Matt and Theo are incredibly talented! We wrote a really catchy pop track which I've had in my head numerous times since getting back to the UK. Matt and Theo recorded the track that afternoon while Dane and I went to Steve's house to record our two songs from Monday.

After a busy day of writing and recording, everyone headed over to Allen's beautiful home for the listening party! Here we had the opportunity to listen to most of the songs that had been created that week. Allen played the first verse-bridge-chorus section of each song (about 35 in total) and everyone in the room went through a roller coaster of emotions as each one was played! We were all blown away with the quality of work and how well everyone had done, especially considering the speed at which we all had to write and record. It was a moment we were all looking forward to but all felt that it came round too quickly. Time really does fly when you're having fun!

Everyone gathered round the speakers at the listening party.

Day Six:

In the morning we all went out for a real American breakfast! I was so looking forward to having a milkshake and some pancakes! So that's just what I ordered! Yum yum yum…

Milkshake and pancakes!

Bob Harris and I squinting in the sunshine at the Bootleg BBQ.

Bob Harris and I squinting in the sunshine at the Bootleg BBQ.

After that, we went to The Groove Record Store for the Bootleg BBQ hosted by Bob Harris and Jamie Freeman. Some of the acts who performed at the Americana Festival 2014 were playing.

As the weather was just so hot, we then went back to Gabriella's for a pool party and another BBQ! We chilled by the pool for a bit before heading to Bellesque Nashville where one of our musical friends was performing!

Pretty action packed day!

Day Seven:

I was so looking forward to this day because I was going to be writing with Allen! I don't know what we would have done with out him; he helped organise the whole week, hosted the listening party, was there for us when ever we needed anything and was such a star! I felt so happy that he wanted to write with me! We spoke about lots of things before we settled down to write, but when we started talking about our love of Christmas everything fell in to place and the inspiration came to us easily, so we wrote a Christmas song together!

After we'd finished recording our demo, I looked at my phone and saw that Rebecca Newman had got to Number One in the UK Classical Charts with her album Dare to Dream on which we sing the duet 'Sull'aria'. I was so happy and so over the moon! I'd already told Allen all about Rebecca and the album, so he said we must go and celebrate! He treated me to an amazing dinner at a restaurant down the road from his home. It was some of the best food I had in Nashville and I had a wonderful time. Thank you so much Allen!

Day Eight:

In the morning I made my way to the cafe where I was going to meet Rebecca Hosking. It's so strange when you meet someone you talk to so much for the first time, I felt like I knew her already! She was really lovely and we had a great chat about our careers, the music industry and our wonderful fans and friends that connected us. It was so lovely to meet her! After we walked back to her car I carried on to Allen's so we could have a cup of tea together before I had to go to the airport. I was SO sad to be leaving Nashville, I've made friends for life and met so many inspiring people. I just can't wait to go back!

Thank you so much to all the incredible writers on this trip. Thank you to Allen, Phil, UKTI, Write off the Row, Creative Caffiene, Monica, Pino, John Saunderson, Belcourt Taps, Ross, James Elliot, Belmont University and everyone who made this week possible! It was truly unforgettable and I am so grateful.

Mary-Jess x