There's no business like show business...
We have become fast fans of singer/songwriter Carrie Cunningham and her Showgirl Series, where she has been releasing a new single every month during 2021. When speaking about her upcoming album Showgirl, set to be released this November, she said “What I love about this album is I am pulling from all the genres that make me who I am today as an artist. Over the course of the releases, you will hear a total of 7 different genres and I couldn't be more excited to let my creativity shine!” We were thrilled when we had the opportunity to chat with her recently about her career, passions, hobbies and more!
How did your “Showgirl Series” come about?
Well, let’s start off with the song "Showgirl." It came about when I was driving home from my last tour in 2019. I hadn’t planned on recording an album. I was planning on taking a break from music, because I needed it. But, then I noticed songs I really wanted to get out into the world. They weren’t all country, but they were all a part of me that I felt helped express me in some way. So, I decided to put together the album. When I was talking to Colleen at Anchor Publicity, I told her I was going to release a single a month - but she had mentioned putting it all together as the Showgirl Series. Duh! It was brilliant! The album was named as such and I was already planning on explaining how each song came about during the monthly releases, so calling it a series really tied it all together.
We love your new single “Road by Road.” How is this one different from the previous songs you’ve released this year?
Oh, it is completely different than the others! It has a real Americana feel to it and it is a great story. All of my songs have a bit of truth in them, like all songs should, but this one was different. When telling my regression stories with my co-writers, I was hesitant at first. I have written other spiritual songs before and songs about Jesus, but this one made me feel a little nervous to talk about. I never wanted to make my co-writers feel uncomfortable with what I have seen or experienced. Luckily for me, they were both receptive to the idea of writing a song about past lives. Seeing everything in my head, I was a real stickler when it came to how were were going to write it out. Part of me was like “no, it has to be written like this… this is how it all went down.” But, then I had to take the truth and not let it interfere with the story. I am really happy that Jan and Lucy were so willing to caress the song and my feelings enough to make me want to share it with the world.
Do you have a favorite song you’ve ever written?
Tricky question. But, yeah, I think my favorite one would probably be “Smile Again.” I wrote it with my then bass player, Kevin Dale, in 2005. There was a horrific murder abduction case that happened in Idaho from serial killer Joseph Duncan. Without going into detail for sensitive readers, it revolved around the Shasta/Dillan Groene kidnapping and family murder. Readers can dig into it online for more details. Nonetheless, I was imagining Shasta’s mother looking down from heaven protecting her. So, I started writing the song on the way home from a gig and asked my bass player if he wanted to write it with me. It was the first song he and I had written together and the first video I had made. I was on a label at the time and we partnered up with the Vanish Children’s Alliance to make the video. The whole subject is touchy but I needed to write it.
Do you prefer co-writing songs or writing solo?
I like a nice blend of both!
You spend half of your time in California and half in Tennessee. What do you love about both states?
September marks the 20 year anniversary of me going back and forth to Tennessee. I have always loved it. It makes me feel at peace and at home...like I belong. All of my closest friends live in Nashville. I have only lived in California for 4 years. I lived in Washington State for the longest time and I could never fully move to Tennessee because of my ex-husband and my current husband’s job. But, I am very fortunate to have a wonderful husband who supports the travel and someday he will be able to join me in Tennessee.
I never dreamed I would ever live in California, but I am so blessed to be able to! I am a water girl and I love tropical life. It’s not Hawaii, but I am a mile away from the ocean and I love the vibe in SoCal. At times, both lifestyles are about the same and at times they are completely different. Either way, I am grateful and thankful for both!
Not only are you a singer, songwriter, mother, wife, performer, philanthropist AND auctioneer, we also heard you are an avid soccer fan. Do you have a favorite memory from a Nashville SC game you’ve attended?
Yes, I love soccer. Since I just bought season tickets this year, I don’t have too many memories of Nashville SC - but I love “Moses” and how we got our mascot! My first game I attended, we won 5-1 (I believe). It was great! Oh, and I can’t wait for my sweet seats in the new stadium!
If you could sing karaoke with another musical artist, who would it be and what song would you sing?
Leon Bridges. I’m a big fan of his. If I had a chance, it would probably be a Sam Cook’s “Bring It On Home to Me.” I think we would sound great together as a duet!
“Keep doing what you’re doing. Doing good looks good on you.” What are some things you enjoy doing that make you feel good?
Ha! Thanks for quoting one of my songs and my favorite line! Helping people in general. I just naturally want to assist where I am needed - even something like opening a door for someone or secretly picking up a tab at a restaurant. Making people feel good really makes me happy. Doing things for others is a real spirit lifter!
You can learn more about Carrie Cunningham by visiting https://www.carrielive.com.