North Carolinian singer/song writer Rebekah Todd released her sophomore album, Crooked Lines, a few weeks ago. TalkNerdyWithUs did a review of the album here and it is absolutely a must listen as we transition from winter to spring. Crooked Lines, an album made possible by a Kickstarter campaign, has a little bit of everything, jumping from old southern blues to more soulful, pop songs like “Hustle” that could easily fit into the top 40 radio line-up. Todd was gracious enough to answer a few questions for us about how the South shaped her music, finding confidence in her writing, and where she finds inspiration.
How do you think your surroundings affected or molded your music tastes?
Growing up in the south, there was a lot of swampy blues everywhere. There were also lots of old gospel churches that I frequented and even sang in as a child. The two of these have definitely lent themselves to my blues/soul sound that you hear today!
Were you exposed to a lot of southern soul and blues growing up? It sounds like it on this new album.
I love that you can hear that in the music. As I said above, yes, absolutely. In addition to what I found in my town and surrounding towns, I also grew up with a father who LOVED classic rock, Floyd, Zeppelin etc. He often would play older soul like Bill Withers, Righteous Brothers and Aretha. Quite the eclectic listener!
In terms of songwriting and production, what were some changes you saw yourself making this time around?
I was much more confident in my songwriting this time around. It’s easy to overthink things when writing, but over time, I’ve found that, in my own writing, simple and to the point is what grabs my audience. I’m not trying to claim to be an amazing poet, I’m just trying to get my point across as clearly as possible by giving the listener some quality music behind the lyrics. It takes confidence to keep things simple, and that’s what I’ve done here. At the same time, on this album, we really went a lot more into blues and rock which was brought mostly by the electric guitar. While on the road the last few years, we found ourselves getting more and more rock oriented.
Where do you find inspiration? (nature, culture, people in your life, etc)
That’s a tough one. Inspiration, for me, always comes when I least expect it. I’ll be driving down the road in silence and a song idea will just come out of nowhere. I have to be sure to record it immediately or I’ll forget the idea and it will be lost forever. I definitely am mostly inspired by people!
What are some of your favorite cities to play? Will we be able to catch you out on the road this year?
We will be traveling quite a bit this year with the new album. My favorite city to play right now is Roanoke, VA. We just had our album release party there and they tore the house down. What a great crew of people! We’ll be headed out that way again this summer to play Floyd Fest!
On an off day, what do you like doing? Anything you were looking forward to after the album was finally finished?
Today is actually my first off day since the album dropped. I’ve been in my painting studio all day! I love it. That’s my second passion and it’s a great way for me to unwind and allow myself to process everything that happens over the weekend when we are traveling to and fro.
If you could cover any song right now, what would it be?
Hiatus Kaiyote—any song. They are amazing. It would be a challenge.
Our site is called Talk Nerdy With Us so what do you “nerd out” about?
haha! hmmmmmm. Well, I just asked my boyfriend to answer this for me and without hesitation, he said “Interior Design, Ghosts, The space between trees, yoga and all things related to higher energy.” So….there you go. I also like hand pressed paper and alpaca yarn.
You can purchase Crooked Lines on iTunes now!