An authentic artist is a powerful artist, and with her last two releases, Cambree Lovesy has proven to be just that.
In June 2020, in the midst of the pandemic, Lovesy dropped “Runaway Queen,” and empowering single that came precisely at the right time for many and saw the British Columbia native changing her formula a bit; she cut a song she didn’t write. The move proved fruitful for Lovesy, as it quickly became her most-streamed song on Spotify.
Fast forward nearly a year later, and Lovesy returned with “Stompin’ Grounds,” a fiddle-laden tune that Lovesy says is her most authentic release to date. Equipped with a good-timing music video and a great start on Canadian country radio, “Stompin’ Grounds” has all the makings of a summer anthem for years to come.
As she prepares more new music, we chatted with Lovesy about performing at a young age, all about “Stompin’ Grounds,” being hands on in the studio, livestreams, what listeners can expect from her forthcoming releases and more!
Pro Country: Your music strikes a blend between both modern and 90s country sounds. Can you talk about some of your sonic influences that have had an impact on your sound?
Cambree Lovesy: I’ve been influenced by a lot of 90s country like Shania Twain and The Chicks, and then old school artists like Dolly Parton, Patsy Cline, Willie and Waylon as well, who I grew up on. My mom would always play the CMT channel when I was a baby, so country music was just always in my blood right from day one. When I started to write songs, I was finding that my songwriting was really fitting with a lot of the style reminiscent of the past with a modern spin.
PC: Your bio mentions that you have over a decade of live performing under your belt. What was it about performing that connected with you so early in your life?
CL: I started performing when I was 11, and that’s always been the best part of the job for me. If I could just perform all day every day, I totally would [laughs]. I think music is a great way of connecting people and bringing them together, and you really see that at live shows. Performing is an amazing way to bring people together and get to know them. Being on stage has always felt like home to me. I picked up piano when I was nine years-old and guitar when I was 11, and as soon as I picked up guitar, I started performing little gigs. I think my first gig was at a McDonald’s[laughs]. I slowly worked my way up through my teenage years, and I’m glad I got started so early, because I felt like I grew up on stage. The staging anxiety was never there, it just always felt like my favorite place to be.
PC: At what point did that early interest in performing and music translate into realizing you wanted to and could pursue it as a career?
CL: I don’t ever remember a time where I didn’t think that music was what I wanted to do. As soon as I could sing and could hum a tune, music has always been my focus and my driving force. I’ve always used music and songwriting as a way to cope with and make sense of the things that come in and out of my life, and for me, that’s just how I see the world and communicate with others. Getting stage experience as a kid quickly gave me the confidence that I could do it, and that confidence has grown throughout the years.
PC: Your last single, “Runaway Queen,” has become your most-streamed song on Spotify, and was an outside cut. How did you hear the song and what drew you to record it?
CL: “Runaway Queen” has a really special place in my heart. I was contacted by Sean Gassaway in Nashville, and he and his co-writer had written this amazing song. They were looking for a strong female vocalist to take it on, and they offered the song to me. Usually I don’t record other people’s songs and only record my own, but this was just such an incredible, special circumstance. The song is amazing and it fit my voice really well, and it has a really cool message. I’ve always wanted to be a strong female role model, and this song really gave me the opportunity to be that. I also got the opportunity to go to Nashville for the first time and recorded at Sound Stage Studios, which was a dream come true. Keith Urban had just finished recording his album there, and the people who played on the record were amazing. Going down there to record the song was a trip I’ll never forget, and I can’t wait to go back to again! I’m so proud of what the song has done and I’m so happy that people like it.
PC: To that point, what do you think it is about “Runaway Queen” that allowed it to connect with people the way it has?
CL: The song is a bit on the rocking side, which I really love. I grew up listening to a lot of artists like Queen, because my dad was a huge fan. My live band usually plays in the rock genre, so a lot of my music is based in rock as well. “Runaway Queen” had that really cool guitar lick on it that I think even non-country fans have come up to me and said “Hey, I don’t usually like country, but it’s got this rocky feel and I really connect with it.” I think it also just has a different spin on the traditional narrative of a girl who knows where she’s going it doesn’t let the little things get in her way, and I think other females can relate to that.
PC: You wrote your new single, “Stompin’ Grounds” with Sean Gasaway. Can you take us in the writing room and talk about the inspiration behind the song?
CL: I got a huge burst of creativity throughout 2020, especially when the world shut down. I’ve always been a “go, go, go” person and always have a million things going on at once, but it was actually such a blessing to be able to sit down, pause and have time to sit and write some great stuff. I started writing the best, most authentic songs I’ve ever written. “Stompin’ Grounds” is a song I wrote in December of 2020, and I wrote it because I was thinking about this summer, and realizing that people would want a song that they can dance to when things open back up again. I was looking to put out a summer, banger anthem, and “Stompin’ Grounds” really came from that. I took the song to Sean after I wrote it, and he said that it would be really cool with a line dance part. He said we should do something like the end of “Any Man of Mine,” and I thought it would be awesome to have people doing a little country dance at the bars when they open up this summer. This is also the first song I’m a producer on as well, so it’s a lot of fun to be involved in every single step of the process!
PC: As you’re taking the next step of producing your music, how important is it to be hands on in the sonic aspect of your music as well and to have control on the sound you’ve created?
CL: It’s so important. I think I really realized that as I’ve gotten older. Each project that I’ve done, I’ve become more and more involved in. I think it’s important for an artist to be involved in every step, because everybody has an idea of where a song is going to go. It’s important to listen to those voices and let the musicians put their touch on things, but at the end of the day, someone needs to be the steering ship, especially if you wrote the song and you’re performing and representing it out in the world. It’s such a cool thing as an artist to be hands on and making or advising on every decision. That’s how you get the most authentic product. I recorded three songs when I recorded “Stompin’ Grounds,” and these are the most authentic that I’ve ever been because of that.
PC: You released a music video for “Stompin’ Grounds” a few weeks ago. Can you talk about making the video and how encouraging the response has been so far?
CL: I had so much fun making the video! When I wrote the song, I was picturing it visually, and I knew what the music video would look like. The director was just getting into doing music videos as well, and I just threw all my ideas at him, and he was on board. I got to bring all my friends on set, which was so fun. You’ll see the line dancing part of it, there’s some cowboys in it, and it’s so cool to be able to work with your friends. We had so much fun on set that I think it really translated into the video. People seem to be liking it! I wanted to make a video where people would want to re-watch it, and have something where they find a bunch of quirky things in it where they may not have seen them the first time. I love going back and watching it, I think people can see how much fun we had making it!
PC: “Stompin’ Grounds” was one of the top five downloaded songs at Canadian radio in its first week of spins. What kind of validation comes with seeing that happen with a newly released single?
CL: It’s absolutely incredible, I’m still blown away. I released a couple songs to radio before, but the majority of them were when I was really young. It was a really cool experience and it allowed me to get my foot in the door with Canadian country radio, but I feel like I’ve grown so much as a songwriter and as an artist now. Getting to release songs as an adult, especially songs that I wrote has been really cool. It’s validating to see people liking this song and knowing that I’m on to something with it. It drives me to keep working and see where it goes. To see my name on that list with so many incredible artists that I look up to was amazing! Some of the people that Canadian country radio have been following me since I was 15, so getting to call in and do interviews with people who supported me for so long has been so cool. I’m really thankful for the support I’ve received!
PC: You mentioned earlier that you recorded two additional songs when you recorded “Stompin’ Grounds.” What information can you give about new music and what can listeners expect to hear?
CL: I have a really big mouth so I’m going to try not to say too much [laughs]. I’ll just say that in the next couple songs, you’re going to hear a different side of me. These last two releases have been upbeat, powerful songs, which is where I find a lot of my songwriting goes, but you’re going to hear a more ballady, emotional side of me. I think that strength can be shown in different ways in music, and these next couple of songs that I’m going to release really hit home lyrically and are songs that have a really special place in my heart. I always write from personal experiences, so there’s going to be some really close to the heart songs coming next, and I’m really excited about the next two! There’s a lot more new music coming, and I’m really excited for people to hear it!
PC: As someone who has over a decade of performing experience, what was the past year-plus of little to no live performances like for you? What was the adjustment like?
CL: When quarantine hit, a lot of artists really didn’t know what it meant for us. It’s really been a weird year, but I fully embraced the live streaming aspect of everything. I love people and I love that music allows me to reach people and make relationships with complete strangers. I knew I couldn’t go through the entire lockdown without performing at all, so I started doing a live streaming series on my Instagram and Facebook pages, which has since turned into two times weekly. I go live every Wednesday and every Friday or Saturday depending on what my schedule looks like. I’ve found that I’ve been able to make so many amazing relationships with country music lovers all over the world. In a live performance setting, you really don’t get a chance to have conversations, get to hear people’s stories and take requests or sing somebody happy birthday, but with the live streams, I’ve had the same group of people coming for over a year. We built a little community on there. I really think it was a silver lining that came out of the pandemic. As things are opening back up, I’m still maintaining the live streams because I don’t think that’s something I’ll never stop doing!
PC: Of the things you can control, what are your plans for the rest of the year?
CL: This summer, things are starting to open up a little bit in BC! Today, we got some restrictions loosened a little bit, so we could have some live shows with limited capacity. I’m continuing to perform throughout the summer, and I’m in the middle of doing a virtual radio tour as well. Getting to call in and chat with radio stations and press has been so cool! I’m getting ready to release the next single as well!
I’m also in the middle of getting my Master’s Degree, so I’ll be doing that throughout the summer and into the fall. I’ve got a nice, busy schedule, and I love it that way!
*”Stompin’ Grounds” is featured on The Best of Pro Country playlist!*