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Interview with Andy Barnett: 10 Years of Why They Came and “A Stick Full of Bells”

As we celebrate the 10th anniversary of Why They Came’s debut LP and look forward to their brand new studio Christmas LP, we sat down with Andy Barnett to reflect on the past and look down the road a bit.

Brandon: How did we meet and what made you decide to release your first LP with Bad Apple Records?

Andy: We must have met at a Castle on a Cloud show but I don’t remember specifically. I do remember convincing you my name was Pete at an open mic in BG many years ago. It’s interesting to note that the drummer and bass player of Castle on a Cloud later became the original drummer and bassist for whytheycame.

As far as our first record, I just remember thinking it was time to make a record and knew you had put out a few records. We loved you guys and the label so we just asked if you would be interested in releasing one with us. Here we are ten years later still pretending to be good at this. Thanks for going along. Continue reading Interview with Andy Barnett: 10 Years of Why They Came and “A Stick Full of Bells”

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All This Waiting

The Wait is Almost Over

(click to enlarge)

Two summers ago, my husband took me to Chicago to make one of my dreams come true: seeing U2 in concert. On the way, and especially the minutes leading up to the show starting, I began to have little pricks of worry. What if I am disappointed? What if I have looked forward to this for twenty-eight years and it’s not as great as I think it is? Will this drive/ticket price/two nights in a hotel be ‘worth it’? And then, as I was caught up in the religious experience that a U2 concert is, all of my fears were dashed away and drowned out by the singing.

I feel similarly regarding this album that we are working on. This is a dream in my heart that began twenty years ago. Many times during those years, this dream nearly died. I tried to make it happen on four separate occasions and the project was shelved due to lack of finances, time, moving, and unreliable people. Then, after a wilderness period that nearly killed me, I found myself in Bowling Green talking to Brandon one day about writing music, playing music, really about loving music.

Now, as I am recording and planning arrangements, music videos, cover art and launch parties, I am having similar pricks of worry mixed with elation. Will this be as great as I think it can be? Will this be worth all of the time and heart and effort and tears that went into writing these songs over the past twenty years? My great hope is that the answer will be drowned out by all the singing.

Stay Tuned for Bethany Pedigo’s Debut LP Early 2018

Or e-mail if you’d like a limited edition, hand packaged copy of “Greatheart” to hear an early mix… Continue reading All This Waiting

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When the Fire Dies

I’ve been playing music since I was 10. I’ve been in bands since I was 15.

There was a fire in me from the first time that I heard an indie artist play music. I wanted to be that guy. I wanted to play noisy rock shows for 12 people. That was considered success, because it was never really about success.

Then that fire went away. It’s been about a year since the last time I played a show. I don’t miss it, at least not yet. Every time I practice with my band for the next gig, I always leave saying “I wish that I could just get paid to practice.”

Continue reading When the Fire Dies

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Songwriting as Personal Narrative

Contributed by Taylor Dooley from Wintering. Her EP, Close Enough, is now available on iTunes. Listen to the title track below this article!

Taylor Dooley's Writing Process
Taylor Dooley’s Writing Process

When Brandon first approached me about writing an article on creativity and inspiration, I was really excited until I realized that meant having to welcome people into the inner workings of my mind (even more so than a song usually does). Performing a song for an audience can be nerve-wracking. If you’re lucky enough to have a crowd of active listeners, you know they’re probably dissecting every word. Songwriting, in and of itself, is fairly intimate, so writing an article about such a sacred process is pretty terrifying if you ask me. However, I have decided to be open and honest in the name of “art.”

While I haven’t always been a songwriter, I have always been a writer in some capacity, so there was no distinctive shift when I began seriously writing songs. Poetry and personal narratives were my favorite writing styles, so I saw songwriting as a fusion of the two. Though I can’t say that I’ve ever had a formula, I can say that every song is a personal narrative of sorts and that’s where the ideas are born.

Continue reading Songwriting as Personal Narrative