Justine Blazer is a Nashville producer, singer, songwriter, and recording artist. She is taking the world by storm combining her edgy country/pop/rock with a touch of Detroit soul. The Women of Country recently sat down with Justine to hear more about her journey from winning the Nationwide Ram Trucks Battle of The Bands Competition to touring Europe.
Justine is originally from Southfield, MI, a northern suburb of Detroit. Her childhood was consumed with dance lessons beginning at age 3. Next, began the voice lessons, acting, piano, and then mastering the art of recording/songwriting/producing at age 13. While attending school, she was often forced to miss class due to jobs and bookings. In return, her fellow classmates teased her for being so focused and driven at a young age.
Justine’s family has been a major source of support and inspiration, helping her navigate this crazy industry. Owning her own dance studio for 12 years, her mother was the one that introduced Justine to this lifestyle. Justine’s husband doubles as her tour manager, and recording studio manager. Her brother-in-law was her first guitar player. Talk about a family business!
Drawing inspiration from Reba, Patsy Cline, Linda Perry, Sylvia Massy, Machine, and Shane McAnally is what set Justine’s sights on becoming a star. Despite hailing from the birthplace of, “The Motown Sound,” Justine always loved country music. She has worked with numerous promoters, publicists, and labels throughout the years from Sony Red, Rick Hendrix, Ram Trucks, and more. Her mentor, Billy Decker, has 16 number 1 hits and has worked with Sam Hunt, Chris Young, Dustin Lynch, Justin Moore, and Rodney Atkins to name a few.
Having written hundreds of songs completing 7 full albums , Justine has plenty of experience and advice for up and coming artists. She says, “Learn as much as you can about the industry, the business and having a full grasp of reality and expectations. Also, don’t try to be like anybody else. Do what you do well and own it. Also, be nice to everybody, make friends with everybody. Try to avoid burning bridges at all costs. This is a very small industry at the end of the day. Also focus on trying to get a brand not just sing and write songs. Find a brand that is unique to you but yet relatable to the masses”
Don’t expect Justine to be slowing down any time soon. She plans to continue pushing the boundaries, perfecting her craft, continuing to write songs, and inspiring others through her work. She is an avid follower and supporter of all women in the music industry. Justine is proud to be in this undeniable sisterhood, she says, “I support any woman out there trying to do it. It’s a tough industry but if we stick together we can make a lot happen.”
You can stream Justine Blazer on any major streaming platform. Her website is justineblazer.com and you can follow her on social media at @JustineBlazer.
This past weekend was Stagecoach weekend, or should we say Stagecouch. Instead of partying at the Polo Club in Indio, CA this weekend, we partied in the Honky Tonk Dance Hall (otherwise known as the bedroom), the Beer Barn (kitchen) and the Main Stage (living room). Hopefully you didn’t splurge on stylish, bohemian chic Stagecoach outfits, because this year was all about who had the cutest loungewear. The official Stagecoach Instagram account @stagecoach even posted a “Stagecoach Stay At Home Bingo” featuring sayings, “Said ‘It’s 5 O’Clock Somewhere,” “Washed Hands To The Tune Of A Country Song,” “Tuned Into An Artist Livestream,” and “Cried But Make It Pretty.” Don’t be ashamed if your bingo card turned into a coverall, ours did too.
Stagecouch began at 11am on Friday and featured a live Q&A with Dustin Lynch, an at home performance with RaeLynn, and closed the night out with a home performance from Hardy. On Saturday, you had the chance to tune in to receive guitar lessons from Tenille Townes, catch a Q&A with LOCASH, followed up with a performance by Honey Country. Sunday featured Hailey Whitters, Midland, Jon Pardi, and a late night couch party with Diplo.
SiriusXM The Highway had some serious fun during Stagecouch Weekend. SXM The Highway broadcasted exclusive live performances by Carrie Underwood, Eric Church, Thomas Rhett, Ingrid Andress, Ashley McBryde, and more. Stream SiriusXM for free until 5/15.
Stagecoach posted some great drink recipes to make while enjoying the music from home. Check out their Instagram to learn how to make the, “Achy Breaky Heartini,” “Wrecking High Ball,” “The Detox,” “The Cold One,” “Delta Dawn Daqueri,” “Pink Lady Like,” and “The Country Girl.” Let us know if you can guess what songs inspired each drink!
The good news is that Stagecoach is still set to take place October 23-25. Until them, live streams with our favorite artists will continue to hold us over.
Singer-songwriter Meghan Linsey is becoming a household name. Originally from Louisiana, country music was always in her blood. After making the move to Nashville, Meghan got a job in a karaoke bar where she met Joshua Scott Jones and formed Steel Magnolia. The duo was signed to Big Machine Records but split for solo career in 2014.
Meghan was also a contestant on season 8 of The Voice, where she was on Team Pharrell before being stolen by coach Blake Shelton. After the show she released her EP “Believer.” Her most recent song is called “The Woah Down” with Tyler Cain and sheds a bit of positivity in the uncertain times. “I think our goal ultimately is to just bring people together and bring joy and just do something positive in the world. I think it’s perfect that it’s coming out when it’s coming out,” says Meghan.
You can listen to “The Woah Down” on all streaming platforms here.
Former American Idol star, Gabby Barrett, has topped Billboard’s Country Airplay Charts with her single, “I Hope”. The non-traditional breakup song with a touch of vengeance was written by Barrett, Zach Hale, and Jon Nite in 2018. After placing third on Idol, Barrett didn’t have the luxury of labels fighting over her. Instead she acknowledged that, “Okay, I’m going to have to stick my nose to the ground and just really focus on writing. Hopefully we get a really good song out of it.” Wow, did she hope right! Little did she know that she would be scoring her first number one shortly.
On her Instagram @gabbybarrett_ she posted a behind the scenes video of the moment that her manager called to tell her the news! After answering the call, her manager soon joined her Radio Promotions team on the line. Barrett was in disbelief upon hearing the news and naturally showered her team with appreciation and gratitude. Not to mention, she was looking beautiful and sporting a stylish leopard print face mask.
Barrett told Billboard, “I want to thank The Lord for His graciousness and kindness always. Thank you to country radio for embracing me; my husband and family; my label and management; my co-writers, who knew this song was special from the beginning; and [the song’s] producer, Ross Copperman. I am still in shock. I can’t wait for y’all to hear what’s next.”
“I Hope” is the first song to hit No. 1 by a woman since Carly Pearce’s “Every Little Thing” in 2017. Prior to that, Kelsea Ballerini peaked at No. 1 in 2015 with, “Love Me Like You Mean It.” 9 years before Ballerini, Carrie Underwood’s first single, “Jesus, Take the Wheel” hit No. 1 for a six-week stay in 2006. That is a 14 year span of only 4 women filling the coveted No. 1 spot on Country Radio. Currently in the Top 20, there are only 3 women. Gabby Barrett at No. 1 with “I Hope,” Ingrid Andress at No. 4 with “More Hearts Than Mine,” and Carrie Underwood at No. 13 with “Drinking Alone.”
There are many forces at play when it comes to the lack of women on Country Radio. At the most recent Country Radio Seminar (CRS), Damon Moberly, VP of Promotions at Mercury Nashville sat down to take his place at a panel about women in country music. He joked, “Doing the female panel. What could go wrong?” All jokes aside, it is common knowledge that male artists receive more spins on Country Radio. Rolling Stone reported on a 19 year study in which, “The artists with the most career spins have all been men- Underwood ranks at Number 11 and Miranda Lambert, who logs platinum albums and plays arenas, sits at Number 21 with less than 2 million career spins.” While we aren’t where we want to be yet, let’s keep this conversation happening. Continue calling into your local radio station and requesting your favorite women of country!
Barrett recently debuted a remix of “I Hope” featuring Charlie Puth. Stream that version here!
If you have yet to listen to the upcoming pop-country trio, Auburn Road, here is your sign to go stream their newest single, “Warning.” Paxton Martin, Kristen Brown, and Alicia Paulson are the three young women that make up Auburn Road.
Since the release of their debut EP Fancy, the trio has since amassed 17.1K Instagram followers, has traveled throughout California performing at clubs and county fairs, and most notably they have performed at Stagecoach Festival. They have opened for Morgan Wallen, Love & Theft, and country music legend Toby Keith.
Martin, Brown, and Paulson are life-long friends hailing from the suburbs of Sacramento. However, despite calling California home, their music reflects the spirit of Nashville. Their stunning harmonies, and sassy spirit are crashing through the typical labels placed on the women of country music.
“Warning” is a song about having believed that you were over the breakup and over the ex only to see them moving on with their life. The trio sings, “In my head I put you to rest / Thought the worse was done / I know that I should wish you the best / But didn’t think it’d come so fast.” All too familiar feelings for many of their listeners!
Auburn Road channels the fashion style of country fashionista Raelynn, the gritty experienced lyrics of Miranda Lambert, and the emotionally driven heart of Maddie & Tae. Auburn Road recorded their sophomore EP, Mustang Vol. 1 in lieu of studio tricks and auto tune.
Later on the girls sing, “I would have prepared myself / For seeing you with someone else / If I had a warning.” It’s unfortunately an inevitable part of moving on seeing the person that you once made happy, happy with someone else! The trio acknowledges, “Girl you better brace yourself because this is gonna hurt like hell.”
Auburn Road will soon be premiering the corresponding music video for their catchy single “Warning” in the upcoming weeks.