What got you interested in music?
Chelsea Carlson: I’ve always been into music! My parents are music lovers so I grew up always listening to music and messing around with different instruments. I actually started singing and writing songs when I was only nine years old, and it sort of just evolved from there over the years! I started getting seriously into music when I was in high school, which is when I started playing bass and guitar, and I pretty much knew by the time I was fifteen that this was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life.
Which artists or bands have you been influenced by?
I’ve been influenced by a lot of artists because I don’t think it’s good to box yourself into any one genre. I take a lot of influence from classic rock bands like Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, and the Beatles, as well as modern rock like Grace Potter and the Foo Fighters. But, I also really love singer-songwriters, the original greats like Carole King as well as contemporary ones like Christina Perri. It’s my goal to really mix rock with songwriting and blend the different genres together to make something new and unique.
Is there anything you're hooked on right now?
I teach music lessons, and my students are always introducing me to new music. For a long time, I really didn’t like much of the new music that you hear on the radio, but I do think it’s on an upswing. Generally when I listen to music, I’ll always revert to the bands I already love – usually Grace Potter and Led Zeppelin – but I do like a lot of newer stuff too. For instance, I really like Sia’s music. I do a cover of “Elastic Heart” that is one of my favorites to play. I also love Adele. I haven’t had a chance to completely listen to her new album because I’ve been so preoccupied with preparing for my album (haha) but I’m excited that she’s back on the scene because I love her songs and style so much.
What inspired your single, "Cherry Blossom"?
I wrote “Cherry Blossom” because I wanted to write a song that used a lot of metaphorical imagery in the lyrics – something that has since become a bit of a trademark in my songwriting. “Cherry Blossom” is inspired by a true event, as most of my songs are, about the rise and fall of a friendship I had. I used the idea of the cherry blossom, a beautiful flower which only lasts a brief time before turning into a leaf and falling down, to represent this falling out.
Is that single indicative of what we can expect to hear on your forthcoming album?
Definitely! “Cherry Blossom” really showcases a lot of the different aspects of my album – the acoustic elements mixed with the full rock band vibe, the belting vocals, the awesome guitar solos – it’s just got everything. If you like “Cherry Blossom,” I know you’ll like the rest of the album, as well!
Could you sum up your album, The Broken Road, in one sentence?
One sentence? That’s really hard! To sum it up… “The Broken Road” follows me on my musical path so far, and the songs really tell that story through their different topics, styles, and genres; if you were to line everything up, you could really see how I have evolved as a musician and that this album is really the result of an amazing journey so far.
How would you describe your sound to someone who had never heard it?
I always tell people I’m like Led Zeppelin meets Adele – a mixture of classic rock with modern singer-songwriter. I’m not your typical rocker chick, nor am I your typical singer-songwriter. I’m somewhere in between, and I know that my mixture of lyrics that tell a story with music that is very energetic and exciting is something unique and that you’ll hopefully love!
What do you hope listeners can take from your music?
As a songwriter, it’s my hope that listeners will feel like they can relate to my lyrics and, like, through telling my story, I’ve also told theirs. I think that the connection between people is one of the most powerful things about music. I also really hope that my songs have transcended genres enough to really bring a new perspective on both rock and singer-songwriter music, and that this blend will be something people really like and can maybe open up listeners to getting into both of those genres even more.
Is there anything you'd like to add?