Behind the Song
Brenda Cay grew up on the eastern shore of Maryland and originally forged her path in business as a CPA. However, her passion has always been music. Brenda has now established herself as a reputable songwriter and artist in Music City, USA. She focuses on country music, but her songs are woven with subtle hints of pop, rock and R&B and reflect the influence of Kenny Chesney, Terri Clark and Sara Evans. Escaping the stresses of daily life and having fun are common themes in her lyrics and melodies, but she is not afraid to tackle more serious topics. Her songs are relatable, diverse and are constructed in a manner true to the tenets of country music storytelling. Country artist Steven John Simon credits Brenda with helping him to launch his career with her song "Tongue Tied." Heart Songs Records also praises her, saying "Brenda is a solid songwriter and artists should take her pitches seriously.”
For fans who have never heard your music, can you pick three words to describe it?! If three words just aren't enough then tell us more!!
Three words I would use to describe my music are relatable, heartfelt, and real. I listen to music for a variety of reasons. I could be sad and want something to cheer me up. Or, maybe I'm at a party and want to dance or just want to get lost and forget about my troubles. Ultimately, we all listen to music because it makes us feel something. When I write, I try to keep in mind the emotions and life experiences my listeners might be going through and create stories that may give them encouragement, joy, and a sense of connectedness.
What is your favorite part about being an artist? Is it songwriting, performing, recording, something else?) Tell us why.
My favorite part of being an artist is everything relating to the music itself. I love the creativity in songwriting and there is a different creativity in the studio. It’s always magical watching a song come to life. It’s like watching a child grow. You take an idea and begin to form a story, let's say on the acoustic guitar. Then that song takes baby steps (rewriting lyrics and tweaking melodies). Then in the studio you watch it grow into maturity as other instruments and dynamics give the song personality. Performing live is completely different. It’s the reason I make music - to connect with the fans! There is nothing like the feeling you get when someone comes up to you after a show and tells you how your song touched them. When someone hears “I Fish” and they tell me their story, I’m moved to tears. Music creates an amazing bond whether I’m sharing it with other songwriters, musicians, or fans. I enjoy getting to do all of these things.
Can you tell us what being in the recording studio is like for you?
Being in the recording studio fascinates me. The musicians come in after listening to my acoustic work tape. The click track is playing, the drummer counts off and the band plays and boom - there’s a song. They may do a couple of takes or go back and change something after, but there is no rehearsal. I am in awe of musicians who can be so spontaneously creative and in the moment, change up something they’re doing because of what another band member is playing. I thrive on that energy and it makes me want to write a song.
Okay, this a fun question. When you are not doing music, what else do you enjoy doing?
I enjoy watching football, going to the movies, hanging out with friends and playing games, and hanging out with my husband even if we’re doing nothing.
Who do you admire most in the music scene today and why?
There are so many talented people that I admire for various reasons, but if I have to pick one, I would have to say Thomas Rhett. Every song that he comes out with is so good and he has a way of drawing you in. His songs are so much fun to sing along with and he has become a country superstar and yet he seems so down to earth. He seems like the kind of person that would be fun to hang out with and write a song.
Can you tell us what song you've written that is the most emotional and describe the meaning behind it?
My most recent single, “Wherever You Are” is possibly the most emotional song for me personally. My son recently took a job on the west coast and even though he didn’t live at home, he lived close. The thought of him moving so far away was really hard for me. As a parent, you never stop worrying about your kids and even if the only thing you can do is give them a hug when they’re not feeling well, you want to be able to do that. Now I can’t just jump in the car and go see him and that has been a big adjustment. Writing this song helped me work through some of those feelings, but was also a labor of love in that it was a gift to my son. He can turn this on when he’s missing me and in a way I’m there with him.
Stream "Wherever You Are" on Spotify!
Are you working on any new material right now or what's in the works for the upcoming year?
I have been writing and recording some great new songs. I’ll be releasing an EP later this year and I’m excited for everyone to hear them. There’s some fun stuff coming up and I hoping to get out and play some shows soon.
Tell us where fans can access your music.
My fans can find my music at https://www.brendacay.com/ and I would love a follow in Instagram which I keep updated with the latest song info.