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INTERVIEW: Alt Blues/Soul Artist Rebekah Todd

Hi Rebekah, welcome to VENTS! How have you been? 

Hello and thank you! I’ve been very well and busy. We have finally finished mailing out our packages to all of the Kickstarter supporters.  What a task! 450 packages AND emails later, everyone is alive and well.  Very excited about the recent release of our single, “Hustle”.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Hustle”? 

Hustle was written about a friend of mine who at one point this year, had four jobs.  I swear, he never slept.  After watching him grind for months on end, I woke up one morning and the song poured out.  Originally written on an acoustic guitar if you can believe it!  That’s how most of my songs start out.

Any plans to release a video for the single? 

Yes!  We have a video that will be completed very soon.  We’re excited to release it as it features several street musicians from my homebase of Wilmington, NC.  French videographer, Jesse Gagne has spent quite a bit of time contacting and filming these local “buskers”.

The single comes off your new album Crooked Lines – what’s the story behind the title? 

Crooked Lines has many meanings.  The first thing that comes to mind is just the amount of driving that musicians have to do.  Eventually your days simply become full of those white lines on the road.  For me, personally, Crooked Lines lends itself to the Artist Way.  When you are a self-employed artist, there is never a set path for you.  You have to spend every day creating your own way and forging your own path.  There is no instruction manual.  We tend to walk a crooked line as we find our way.

How was the recording and writing process? 

The recording process was great!  We did the majority of it in May with the full band and added all the bells and whistles over the following months into August.

What was it like to work with Dick Hodgin and how did that relationship develop?  Dick Hodgin was great.  He’s a sharp shooter with a silver tongue and is not one for the thin skinned.  He tells you exactly what he thinks and doesn’t beat around the bush.  Luckily for me, these are my favorite types of people.  If something sucks, I want you to tell me.  Don’t sugar coat it.  Time is money so keep it simple and give it to me straight!  We got along great and worked together well.

How much did he influence the album? 

Dick Hodgin was very good about letting me have my say in everything.  I can be a bit of a control freak sometimes, hehe.  I had a very specific way that I wanted each song to sound.  He listened to what I wanted and his main concern was, as he said over and over, to showcase my voice, which I think he did a great job of in the mixing.

What role does North Carolina plays in your music? 

What a big question!  NC is where my homebase and heart is.  Most of my friends are here.  On a musical note, growing up, i went to a Pentecostal Holiness Church (because I loved the way they sang).  They were so uninhibited in their singing and I joined the choir at a young age.  I have since moved on from that part of my life but will always carry that southern Pentecostal singing with me.

How would this album showcase a matured side of the band? 

The band is an ever changing thing.  many of the people on the album were ‘session musicians’ who are incredibly talented.  I think this album shows a huge amount of growth on the writing side.  If compared to the last album, ‘Roots Bury Deep’, you can hear that I’m more confident in my vocals.  I’m reaching for bigger and higher and larger notes.  The writing is more edgy.  This also translates to the live show which has become bigger in its dynamic reach!

What aspect of love did you get to explore on this material? 

This album covers every step of love.  The whole album is about love, really.  I started the album while I was in the puppy love phase, (Let Me Prove My Love).  It was  a long distance relationship (Streets of Santiago).  He moved back home to try and be close to me and had to work four jobs in the beginning to make ends meet (Hustle).  Things went south and we broke up (Rotten Man).  Tadaaaaa!

Any plans to hit the road? 

Definitely.  2017 has big things in story for Rebekah Todd & They Odyssey.  Our spring tour will be announced in the next few months.

What else is happening next in Rebekah Todd’s world? 

I’m already starting to write for the next album and am looking forward to pursuing more in my painting/drawing world when I… if I have free time.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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