Interview: Stephanie Quayle Talks ‘Drinking With Dolly’, Farm Life, Her ‘Flock’
Stephanie Quayle grew up admiring female country icons such as Dolly Parton, Tammy Wynette, Patsy Cline and Loretta Lynn, among others -- strong women with strong voices -- so when she first heard "Drinking With Dolly," which would become one of her singles, Quayle knew that it was a perfect fit.
"I could talk about this song literally for hours," Quayle tells The Boot of "Drinking With Dolly," which was written by written by Rachel Proctor and Victoria Banks. "This song, from the first time I heard it, it just struck a chord with its simplicity, the love of simple times, but also the tribute to the women in country music ... I went tooth and nail to fight for the song."
Parton's not only heard the song, Quayle says, but reached out to the rising singer.
"Isn’t that wild? It’s very wild," Quayle gushes. "I have a letter from her -- a typed letter from Dolly Parton -- on my piano. Every day I go by it, and I’m just like, ‘This is really happening.’"
Quayle first took notice of Parton and her contemporaries, and country music in general, while growing up on a bison farm in Bozeman, Mont.
"We had a little silver radio, which played 24/7 in our barn; that’s where I spent most of my time -- with our horses in the barn," Quayle recalls. "It just started with poetry, and it led to writing little songs on the piano and my guitar ... I had no idea [that a career in country music] was even possible."
Life on a farm provided Quayle with a work ethic that's helped her as she works her way up in the music industry.
"I’m not afraid to work," Quayle acknowledges. "I love being active. I love being outdoors. I love working."
Although Quayle loved her life in Montana, she knew her heart was in music, so it was an easy decision to make the move to Nashville, where she's been for seven years.
"I didn’t know what the heck I was doing; I just knew I had to jump," Quayle admits. "I said, ‘If I don’t do this now ... If I never just go, 'Okay, I’m going all in, I’m just going to fight.'' If I’m going to fight tooth and nail and work my butt off for someone else, I can do it for myself ... I definitely took the long road, but it’s been amazing."
Quayle is currently working on a new album, and growing her fan base, lovingly referred to has her "Flock of Quayle."
The stage is where I make the most sense to myself.
"I’d love to make my way up the charts -- I think radio’s super important -- but my main goal is just get to the fans, get live music everywhere, in any which way I can. That’s my favorite thing," Quayle explains. "The stage is where I make the most sense to myself.
"Being able to connect with the fans, there’s nothing like it. They’re just incredible people, and they all come together because of music," she continues. "We’re growing and building, so it’s just a big family reunion at every show: You get to catch up with their lives ..."
Quayle says that her forthcoming album will reflect her early influences, along with the sounds she now gravitates toward.
"I’ve got a throwback thing, [but] I’ve got a modern thing in my sound, [too], so it’s just kind of a 'me thing' that I’m excited about," she notes. "I feel like it’s my music, and that’s good. I’m not trying to be someone else; I’m being myself, which is really great."
Quayle recently released a new single, "Winnebago." All of her music is available for download on iTunes.
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