Interview With: Rebekah Hawker

NEW LEASE MUSIC has caught up with REBEKAH HAWKER, whose single ‘Kempenfelt Bay’ was named Song of the Month by the blog back in August.

Stick around to find out what’s she has been up since the release of the single (taken from her EP, ‘Careful Women’) plus her general views of the music industry of today.


NLM: Hey, thank you for taking part in an interview with NEW LEASE MUSIC.

So what have you been up to in the music circuit?

RH: I feel so honoured you would ask me, it means a lot to be able to share with you so thank you! I’ve mostly been focused lately on touring, specifically in Ontario to support the release of my EP ‘Careful Women’. I have some songwriter showcases coming up in November and more shows planned for the new year as well. I’m excited to showcase these songs in front of people who might connect with them.

NLM: Back in August, you released your single, ‘Kempenfelt Bay’. What was the public reception of the single so far?

RH: So far listeners have been so generous and kind with their responses to ‘Kempenfelt Bay’. I feel really grateful to those who have reached out to me to share how the song has impacted them. So many people I know have moved away from their hometowns and share the same nostalgic feeling I’ve written about in the song.

NLM: What’s your inspiration behind the single?

RH: I wrote Kempenfelt Bay when I moved away from home for the first time and was renting a single room in a boarding house in downtown Toronto. It was the most isolated and lonely I had ever felt up to that point in my life. I was terrified at the overwhelming weight of the future, and having to move forward into it. All I could do in that moment was look back and remember my home, and an old relationship that made me feel so comfortable and safe, it had me longing for home.

NLM: You also released your four-track EP, ‘Careful Woman’, back in August. What’s your proudest single on the project and why?

RH: What a tough question! That’s the musical equivalent of asking a mother to choose her favourite child. It’s really hard to choose one, although I will say ‘Round of Fools’ will always hold a special place in my heart because it was the first single I released from the EP. I felt a lot of pressure riding on that first song and its reception. I was really joyed to learn after its release how much it was resonating with people , it carried itself so much further than I could’ve anticipated.

NLM: So how would you describe your sound to potential fans?

RH: I would say it’s this country folk hybrid that focuses on storytelling, both through the lyrics and the melodies I write. There are also some traditional, more vintage country sounds woven in.

NLM: If you had to collaborate with ONE mainstream artist, who would it be?

RH: Maybe this is super expected but it would be so fun to collaborate with Kacey Musgraves. She’s an incredible writer, so honest and such a powerhouse. I feel like I could write the most badass songs with her.

NLM: If you had three wishes to change the music industry today, what would they be?

RH: 1. I think I’d try to make mentorship more accessible to artists (especially female) of varying success levels. To create a community where we can share more freely across levels and can better instil knowledge of both the business and creative side of music for artists in the beginning stages of learning and playing.
2. I would take over the country radio stations and change the old model of the boys club, more women on the country charts!!
3. I would change the vibe of ‘there can only be one’ that plagues so many artists. That mentality, especially for women (even more so for women of colour) who see there are only so many females allowed in that space is so damaging and leads to this insane competition that pits women against each other in a very unhealthy way. Collaboration and community always wins.

NLM: So what are your plans for this year?

I’ll be continuing my touring, hoping to make some new friends across the way and collect some new experiences. I’m applying to some festivals domestically (in Canada) so hopefully most of next summer I’ll be on the road. I also have a few music videos planned in the next couple months so that is something to be looking forward to…

NLM: How can potential fans make contact with you?

RH: You can find me most active on instagram and facebook! @rebekahhawker as well as through my website http://www.rebekahhawker.com. I’m very friendly so they can reach me on those platforms and I’d love to chat with them 🙂

NLM: Finally, if music didn’t exist, what profession would you do?

RH: I’ve always been so interested in the minds of those people around me, how they work and how I can understand them more clearly and understand how to navigate those relationships effectively and positively. I totally would have worked in the psychology world, as a therapist but probably also as a researcher of a sort. Being a couples therapist as well could be so interesting!

Rebekah Hawker Shares Emotive Track ‘Kempenfelt Bay’, Taken From Her Brand New EP

REBEKAH HAWKER‘s brand new single,’Kempenfelt Bay’, displays the Canadian singer/songwriter’s ability to immediately command an audience’s undivided attention without any gimmicks – but with straight up, powerfully emotive folkore storytelling against an intimate acoustic setting.

‘Kempenfelt Bay’ is taken from Rebekah’s new EP entitled ‘Careful Woman’ – check out the four-track set sometime via SoundCloud, Spotify and Apple Music…but for now, listen to the stunning piece below…

Song of the Day: Spencer Street – Ren

REN brings something soothing for the weekend with latest single ‘Spencer Street’, the follow up to the well received ‘Blue Hounds’.

Unlike ‘Blue Hounds’, a protest song in the classic mould, ‘Spencer Street’ is, as Ren explains “a nostalgic song reflecting on a relationship and life I had in Newcastle a few years ago. I wrote it whilst I was on the road a year or so after the break up. But ‘Spencer Street’ with her still felt like home to me.”

REN – real name Conor Owen – first came onto the music circuit with debut EP, ‘A Calling From The Shore’ which, to date, has received over 700K streams on Spotify. He recently supported Sam Fender, Westerman and Elvis Perkins as well as appearing as an extra in Bohemian Rhapsody.

Have a listen to ‘Spencer Street’ below:

Album Review: Southwood Waltz – David Ayscue

DAVID AYSCUE‘s debut album, ‘Southwood Waltz’ offers a simplistic yet whimsical approach to his singer/songwriter folkore/Americana fusion, allowing his mellow and delicate vocal instrument to poke through as he documents his transition from youth to adulthood.

‘New York’ gives the eight-track collection a stunning introduction, where the gentle guitar melodies takes centre stage and provides that real authenic acoustic setting.

‘Sliverlake Sunday’ and ‘In My Day’ slightly switches the tone and uplifts the album; the arrangements of ldyllic overtones, the horn section and satisying guitar plucks provides that real gritty soulful rock that really hits the soul.

The hauntingly beautiful ‘Where We Land’ concludes the set with it’s stripped down, guitar/vocal combo, which then builds into an euphoric Mumford-and-Sons style, 4-on-the-floor anthem.

‘Southwood Waltz’ puts Ayscue in good standing as one of the artists to watch for this year. His debut offering is not bad, not bad at all!

Listen to Ayscue’s ‘Southwood Waltz’ below:

Must Listens: New York, Penny, Where We Land

Songs of the Day: Blue Hounds – Ren

Following the release of his debut EP, ‘A Calling From The Shore’ which generated over 650K streams on spotify, REN returns with a mellow piece entitled ‘Blue Hounds.’

Written and recorded in Newcastle, ‘Blue Hounds’ takes careful aim at the dogs let slip by a savage Tory agenda from Theresa May’s 2017 Tory manifesto to current EU negotiations.

Speaking of his latest effort, REN says: “With this song, I wanted to make people more aware of and engaged in current affairs. It’s a call for people to take a stand against policies that infringe on our rights.”

Have a listen below: