As a Nashville native, Brieanna James has southern roots that run deep, and now the young star is excited to begin her country career. She recently released her debut single, “Hot,” which was co-written by Kelsea Ballerini. We chatted with Brieanna about her new song and music video, her influences, and much more. Get to know the rising star below!
NG: Can you talk a little about how your upbringing and how you began performing?
BJ: Well, my parents are both from Texas and I was born in Nashville so I had a very traditional southern upbringing. From the way I talk, the way I dress and what I eat, you can definitely tell I’m from the south. Although I did spend some time growing up in LA, and have some influences from there, there’s no denying that my southern roots run deep. However, when it comes to performing, none of my family ever did music. From the moment I was born I was singing. Heck, I was songwriting before I even knew what songwriting was. Music always came naturally to me. Music is apart of me and so is performing.
NG: Can you describe your sound in 3 words?
BJ: Flirty! Edgy and sassy
NG: Your first single “Hot” was co-written by country’s “hottest” artist right now, Kelsea Ballerini. How does she inspire you?
BJ: Being the first female artist in several years to have a debut number one hit is very inspiring to me. Not only that, but she is such an awesome writer! She has amazing songs, my favorite being “XO”. She makes me wanna strive to be better myself!
NG: Do you have a process for writing songs or is it always different?
BJ: Sometimes it’s different, but for the most part it’s usually the same. Most of the time I’ll start playing guitar and almost immediately I will get this melody running through my head. I’ll sing that melody with random words that I call “substitute lyrics” and later I will turn those substitute lyrics turn into real lyrics!
NG: If you could collaborate or tour with anyone, who would you choose and why?
BJ: Sam Hunt or Taylor Swift. I LOVE them.
NG: What songs by other artists are “hot” for you right now?
BJ: LOCASH – “I Know Somebody”, Old Dominion – “Song for Another Time”, Brett Young – “In Case You Didn’t Know”, Hillary Scott and the Scott Family – “Thy Will”, Lauren Alaina – “Road Less Traveled”, Maren Morris – “80’s Mercede“
NG: What’s your favorite song to cover?
BJ: This changes often but, I think if I could cover any song right now it would be “Burning House” by Cam
NG: As a young artist, what’s your biggest challenge?
BJ: Probably trying to work every day on my craft while also trying to finish up school. Also, traveling back and forth between LA and Nashville can sometimes be a challenge, but I know it will all be worth it in the end.
NG: Can you talk a bit about what it was like to film the music video for “Hot”?
BJ: Oh my gosh! Filming that music video was honestly so much fun! I can’t wait to film my next one! I loved everything from getting my hair and makeup done, my filming the performance shots, spending all day on set with a hot guy, and oh yeah… the kissing scene. However, the best of all was getting to see the finished product!
NG: What can fans expect from you next?
BJ: I have a new song and video that is going to be released within the next few weeks! I can’t wait for everyone to see/hear it! I’m also currently working on writing and recording songs for my EP. I’m super happy with what I have right now and I’m so fortunate that I’ve gotten to write and work with such talented people! I can’t wait for everyone to see what’s been in the works!
Pumpkin Spice or Apple Pie: Well, to be honest, I’m not really a fan of either! I’m actually a really picky eater!
Nashville or LA: NASHVILLE
Blake or Miranda: WHAT?! How can I choose! Ugh Miranda? I guess?! Ugh, GIRL POWER!
Instagram or Snapchat: I’m a Snapchat addict! All my social media is under Brieannajames
Dan or Shay: This is the cruelest question ever! I am their biggest fan! Honestly, I can’t answer this one! They’re both so amazing!