With her latest single, Shari Rowe takes aim for a direct hit. When you first hear “Take That Shot,” the new release from Arizona-based country songwriter Shari Rowe, you immediately feel a sense of warmth and introspection. Combining classic country and bluegrass elements with a stellar lineup of Nashville players, Rowe is changing the pace of modern country music.
“Take That Shot” is a perfect example of how Shari’s music is inspired by her easy-going Arizona childhood, which regularly included campfire stories, horseback riding, and spending a lot of time in the great outdoors. The Maven Records artist traded in private living room concerts for the big stage, performing with acts such as Parmalee and Three Dog Night. When she is not traveling the world sharing her original songwriting, she is a valued member of her church worship team, spends quality time with her family, and promotes music education in schools.
Nashville Music Guide had the chance to catch up with Shari for our Lucky 13 Spotlight . . .
What are your musical influences?
“Right now, my musical influences would be Miranda Lambert, Alison Krauss, Ashley Monroe.”
What personal advice would you give to someone wanting to pursue this career?
“Determine whether or not you love this enough to work for this harder than you have ever worked before. Then, don’t compare yourself to others. Whatever you do in life, ask yourself why you are doing it. Always have a purpose because that purpose will help you to overcome the many obstacles that you encounter along the way.”
If you had to do it all over again, would you still choose this career? Would you do anything differently?
“I would absolutely choose this career because it enables me to do what I love and connect with people. I truly feel I couldn’t have done anything differently. Looking back, I have realized every step has been essential to my growth as an artist.”
How would you describe your music to someone that has never heard you before?
“I like the idea of West-Coast Country, I think of my sound as traditional Country with modern/pop phrasing, and bluegrass instrumentation. My writing is heavily influenced by living in AZ and being outdoors.”
What do you feel distinguishes “an artist” from just a musician?
“I don’t think you can have one without the other because someone who is a technical musician still has the ability to convey any piece of music in their own unique way. Anytime you’re conveying your own interpretation of a piece of music, it becomes art.”
If you had the opportunity to change something about the music industry what would it be?
“I hope to see the industry find a way to regulate streaming so that funds aren’t taken away so much from songwriters. I think this would create more opportunity for artists and songwriters to develop their careers.”
How do you like to enjoy your relaxation time away from the music?
“My husband and I love to go camping and we love to just get up to the mountains, to the woods, away from the city.”
What image do you think your music conveys and why did you choose this type of image for your music?
“In my opinion, it’s good to be a strong, positive woman of influence in my family and community. With any platform comes responsibility, and although I love to entertain, I always strive for this to be about something more.”
Someone once said write what you would want to perform over and over. With that in mind, what song do you love to perform the most?
“My favorite song to perform is always the latest one I’ve recorded. Right now that is “Take That Shot”.”
What are your up-to-date performance plans? New Releases? Tours ? News?
“The newest single is “Take That Shot,” I’m excited to say it’s being played all over the country and in different parts of the world and is climbing the charts. I will be headed to Nashville the second week of January to co-write and finish up songs to complete the project, which I’m really looking forward to! We have tons of shows booked, all the way through September, including shows during CMA Fest.”
If you could perform with anyone in the world – either dead, alive, or broke up – who would it be? Why?
“Johnny Cash, I grew up listening to him, he reminds me a lot of my dad who is no longer with us. Johnny Cash carried a brokenness with him and was always very honest about that. With it came both a strength and tenderness.
Miranda Lambert, because she has an amazing way of conveying emotion through lyrics and vocal. There’s something about her that I just really identify with.
Keith Urban, because of his energy when he performs live… There is a certain freedom he carries and I would love to live out one of those moments alongside him on stage.”
Have you been involved in any benefit performances? What was it and how did you become involved?
“I’ve actually been fortunate enough to be part of many benefit performances from events that support the military, all the way to benefits that fight cancer. There is one cause in particular that I have chosen to shine a light on. The Red Note Foundation is dedicated to helping those that seek music education to grow, learn and perform. Music, for me, has always been a place to “go to”. Not every kid is athletic or has a willingness to play sports, so it’s important to me that there’s even an option for them to play music. The Red Note Foundation approached me in 2015 and this year they officially named me their first celebrity ambassador.”
As an artist, how would you define SUCCESS?
“I feel, success as an artist has way less to do with the business side of this industry. Personal success in this industry means people are hearing the music and identifying. Art is not just for the artist, it is a way to relate with others.”
A few last thoughts with Shari Rowe:
Without music, I would be sad and bored! Music is sometimes the best way to say what’s on your heart when words fail.
My music makes me feel inspired to grow and also gives me a certain sense of satisfaction. There is something special about experiencing the process of songwriting.
I write the songs because I love songwriting. I feel it’s one of the best ways to convey emotion and ideas.
Support music because there is so much work that goes on behind the scenes and without it the world would just be a different place.
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