Singer-Songwriter EILEEN CAREY Opens Up About Her Newest Music, Upcoming Shows And A Lot More!
The acclaimed singer-songwriter Eileen Carey unleashed her latest romantic single “Finally” in November and she followed it up with her breathtaking music video which premiered January 6th on ThisIsTheLatest. In creating the music video, Eileen Carey worked alongside her longtime collaborator producer-director Taner Tumkaya. Depicting a journey towards love, the stop motion animated music video is timeless and captivating.
With her single “Finally”, Eileen Carey amplifies those emotions we can’t describe with crystal clarity. “Strong emotions sometimes cry out for strong language,” Carey asserts. “These lyrics state in the plainest possible way what we feel but may be hesitant to say.”
“Finally” also follows the international success of her chart-topping single “Meet Me Halfway,” released in May 2019. Both singles continue with Carey’s positive, uplifting musical style as well as her trademark take on love.
Originally from Ohio, the California-based Eileen Carey has become a staple cross-over artist in various genres such as Country, Pop, and Rock. She has shared the stage with renowned acts such as Wilson Phillips, Don Mclean, Jefferson Starship, Rita Coolidge, The Motels, Albert Lee, Johnny Rivers, Peter Noone, and Tal Bachman.
She was recently awarded Hot AC/AC Breakthrough Artist of 2019 and she has had a near-permanent residence on the New Music Weekly radio charts these past three years, due to a string of cross-genre hits. With a growing success on the charts, Carey has won numerous awards for her various musical releases, going on to be given Reverbnation’s#1 Regional Country-Pop Artist of 2019, Los Angeles Music Awards’Crossover Artist of 2018, Las Vegas Producers Choice Honors Award for Female Solo Country Artist of the Year 2018.
As a performer, the veteran artist has become a regular of the fairs and festivals in California since 2009 and has played California State Fair in Sacramento, L.A. County, Orange County, San Diego, Venice Summerfest, Saw Dust, Del Mar, Apple Valley, etc. She has captured audiences at various venues such as The Saban in Beverly Hills, The Rose, The Canyon Club, The Mint, The House of Blues, and The Echo. When Carey isn’t playing the stages around California, she can be found in Nashville performing for her solid fanbase at the honky-tonks and clubs, including the Blue Bird Cafe, Rippys, Honkytonk Central, Tootsies, 3rd & Lindsley Backstage, and BB Kings.
Learn more about Eileen Carey in the following All Access interview-
Happy New Year! When it comes to your music, what are you most excited about for 2020?
EC: Happy New Year to you guys! I am excited about so many things this new decade! My current single and the music video for my current release “Finally,” for sure. It is an animation using old school cut and paste techniques, had 15,000 views in a week. The audio single is also picking up enormous traction on the New Music Weekly’s Top 40 radio charts as well. I am also excited about a couple of sync agents who I have signed with. Looking forward to the results of those agreements in 2020. And, pardon me but “last but not least” is my four current nominations at the New Music Awards in the Adult Contemporary genre of radio. Yeah, “Meet Me Halfway” for AC/Hot AC Single, Female Artist, Breakthrough and Crossover Artist of the Year.
Can you recall the moment when you thought you could be a musician? What do you think motivated you day in and day out?
EC: Music has always been my first love. I was always singing, and I played drums at 13, but my decision to pursue a career in music came from my day job running the entertainment for a couple of Southern Californian Sheraton Hotels. I was booking acts and realized I could do what they were doing.
How do you think your hometown has influenced the kind of music that you make? If not, why is that?
EC: I think it did. I am from a suburb of Cleveland. Pop music is what I listened to. Country came when my first single, “That Town” did well enough on Adult Contemporary and Pop radio to catch the attention of a Country radio promoter named Gene Kennedy. He said my sound would be perfect for the new country music. Never looked back four albums and ten single releases later till a couple of years ago and I saw the inroads to AC that was made by In the Air and the That Town re-write and recording did in2018. Basically, I grew up listening to mainstream pop and I guess roots show through…
Growing up, how important was music in your life? Were your family and friends supportive of this career choice? If you weren’t a musician today, what else could you see yourself doing?
EC: As I mentioned I grew up singing; in the choir, community and school theater. My family and friends are my greatest fans and supporters. Without the support of my husband I probably couldn’t have had the success, I am having. I actually came to California to make films really, and though you can’t make a career out of music, voice or no voice. I have had some roles but was interested in the making of film and video. Music flooded my being, and I couldn’t ignore it. that is what I might be doing if it weren’t for music. I could also see myself with a career in animal rescue as well.
What has been the biggest surprise so far about making music your career? What has been an unexpected or welcome challenge to it all? What has been the best part of it all?
EC: Initially the biggest surprise about making music my career has been that radio saw my music as country. I really never looked back until the past couple of years when I started recording and writing material that was aimed at the pop music markets with songs like “In The Air”, “Meet Me Halfway”, and the current release, “Finally”.
The largest challenge to it all has been songwriting, but it is a very welcome challenge. It has grown me as a musician and allowed me to dig deep. Material is the greatest challenge and I am always looking for collaborating songwriters to work with. There is an old saying that “if you are standing still, you are moving backwards.” Life is about growing.
The best part of a career in music for me is that I have a career in music. It also gives me the ability to have a say in the world around me and to have a positive effect on people’s lives. But really, how can you go wrong when you are doing what you love?
Let’s talk about your newest music. What was the inspiration for your latest single, “Finally”? What was it like making the music video for it? How creatively involved with the making of it were you?
EC: Well, first of all, the song was written by Meesha Black. The song is a declaration of love and demand for reciprocity. Strong emotions sometimes cry out for strong language. These lyrics state in the plainest possible way what we feel but may be hesitant to say. You are the light that I turn to/you are the sound that I fall into/It’s all the things you do I’ve finally found you/What the hell are you waiting for?
Recording this song took some extra effort. It got a bit hectic since my producer Travis Allen moved his Nashville Tracks to Nashville itself this past year, so I had to jump back and forth a bit. The song further represents my crossing back over to mainstream Pop Music. Travis and I co-wrote Meet Me Halfway with the intention of enlarging my demographic. Meesha Black’s Finally is a further move in that direction.
How would you say that “Finally” compares to anything else that you have released?
EC: It is more pop than my other releases. It is more romantic. More personal type of song than my narrative songs have been. I have been heading that way for a number of reasons, including the observation that Country Music limits the sync and placement possibilities for an artist that crosses over like I do. I will always love Country and Nashville and its artists and musicians, but like Nashville itself, I am growing.
Do you have plans to release more new music soon and a full collection of new songs?
EC: Yes! Another Meesha Black song called Keep Your Love to Yourself is to be released in March, and I am planning a full album release sometime late in 2020 or early 2021.
Do you have any tour dates scheduled for this year yet?
EC: Be opening for Jefferson Starship at the Canyon at the Rose in Pasadena, California on February 7th and on March 13th I’ll be opening for Aaron Neville as well. In May I will be in Nashville to perform a short set at the Sync Summit, and then another Sync Summit in Hollywood in early December.
We are booking a number of shows in Nashville for May and will also be doing a radio station tour that month. We are currently in the midst of booking my usual summer fairs and festivals and in discussion with a couple of booking agents and venues for the coming summer season.
You have shared the stage with many incredible performers so I am curious which one really stands out the most to you? Who have you learned the most from?
EC: Hard to choose one. Every single classic act had something to teach. I never leave the venue without listening and watching their shows. From the incredible showmanship of Peter Noone to the stunning songwriting and performance by Don McClean. The Starship rocks a crowd to this day, as does Albert Lee. But the two. Martha Davis, Rita Coolidge, are the artists who most impressed me.
It is amazing the way old school country artists relate to their fans. Rita has her band come out at the end of the night to meet with the fans. She gets a table set up and they interview with all comers. Incredible work ethic! When I entered the dressing room for the Motels show I was struck by the fact that Martha could have been my older sister. When it comes to Rita, my longtime guitarist and music director John McDuffie has the same roles with Rita, and my longtime friend and bass player Will McGregor, who unfortunately passed away recently has been a member of gentleman Albert Lee’s band for years.
But one of my favorite acts I shared the Whiskey A Go Go with on the July 4th weekend of 2018 was Willie’s granddaughter’s alt-country act the Raelyn Nelson Band.
How do you think you have grown as a musician since you first started making music? What if anything has stayed the same about your music-making process?
EC: I have become a much better singer, performer, and songwriter. I am a student of the art of music, and the music business for that matter. I am a student so I like to think I am always interested in learning so as to give the music fan 120% of me.
The heart of my music though has not changed. It has been, and will always be, about positive living.
How do you feel about social media? What do you think social media has done for your career so far?
EC: I am very active on social media. It has helped me reach music fans from all over the world. It is an essential element in any artist’s career in the 21st Century. It can also be seen as creating a level playing field for musicians and artists, despite the heavy traffic in those platforms. It has allowed many a musician to create niche followings and support.
What musicians would you absolutely love to work with in the future?
EC: Keith Urban because we both like to rock our country-pop. We both write and sing positive songs, and Sheryl Crow because her music is so similar to my own in that she crosses over to so many genres. Be great to write a song with Dianne Warren or Chrissie Hynde!
If you could design your dream music video right now, what would it look like?
EC: Wow! That is a hard one. My newest music video for Finally is amazing. Outside of a music video that has a number of cameo appearances of my favorite artists, I am excited by my current dream music video Finally.
Where would you love to hear a song of yours played?
EC: Grammys and/or the Oscars (lol). “That Town” in a commercial for Ford Mustangs!!
At the end of the day, what do you hope people take away from your music?
EC: Inspiration, common sense, purpose and emotional health. To show people that in life you have many options, and that you can change who and what you’re stuck in. Maybe that answers the question about what makes my music different. I kind of report through my music. My songs are little movies or stories. Little plays that reflect what I see, hear and encounter. Sometimes it is just a word. Sometimes it is something in the news. Movies inspire me, as do great people in any area of life. I create my music and lyrics from what I see all around me. My message in my music is that we can do what we believe we can do and that the journey itself is the reward. Also, it is not worth having if you can’t share it with others.