It’s the start of a new year and EMURG is right back at it again with bringing you emerging artists that we think are worthy of recognition! This month, EMURG brings you the talents of country artist Keesha Scott-Hogan. Since leaving Indiana, Keesha has created a name for herself in the country music scene as an upcoming artist whose small town life experiences and love for music catapulted her into the spotlight of country music. Creating a name for herself in the Nashville and LA music scene, Keesha is showing the competition that success not only comes from hard work and determination, but also proves that any dream can become a reality no matter where you’re from…
EMURG: Can you give our viewers some history about yourself? Who is Keesha Scott-Hogan?
Keesha: I’m just a super outgoing, fun person! I love the big city life, but I’ll always be a country girl at heart. It’s nice to get out of the big city every now and then and get some fresh air though, gotta say!
EMURG: What made you decide to get out of Indiana and become an independent artist in country music?
Keesha: Ah, the million dollar question! As I said in the previous answer, I LOVE the big city life. I really enjoy the fast-paced, multi-cultural environment. It inspires me and keeps me going! However, I really enjoy coming back to Indiana. Here in LA, you start to miss the seasons. You’d think that 90 degrees and sunny everyday couldn’t get old, but it truly does. Sometimes I think to myself, “PLEASE RAIN! Change! SOMETHING!” You lose sight of your days. I like to come back to Indiana every now and then to get inspired in a whole different kind of way, and the seasons definitely help with that, but both places have their strengths and weaknesses.
EMURG: How is your life/past experiences incorporated to your music?
Keesha: Wow, I’ve been through so much in this life already, and I still feel so young! I think my past experiences and the fact that I’ve dealt with so much in so little time has fueled my music with so much life experience and passion. It’s helped me make my music more authentic and meaningful in which it connects with my listeners in some way.
EMURG: How has being a musician changed your life?
Keesha: I’d have to say that it makes you very aware of the people that you surround yourself with, as well as very perceptive of all things going on around you in general. You find out how people really are! Good and bad! It has also helped me realize who I really am as a person and a musician.
EMURG: What are you currently listening to right now?
Keesha: My friend, John Waite, recently turned me onto The Ink Spots! They’re an oldies group and it’s giving me a whole new way to look at my writing! Check them out on iTunes! They’re so cool! I even listen to them when I take a bubble bath by candlelight. I’m also really in love with Sam Cooke right now. His phrasing and the tone of his voice give me chills!
EMURG: What do you want newcomers to your music to know about you? Most importantly, what makes you differ from the ever-growing population of new artists in the country music industry?
Keesha: I think that the most important thing to remember in this business is not to lose your real self. It’s an easy thing to do, especially at the beginning with all of the false promises. My advice to newcomers is that they just need to hang on to what’s real and never ever let go, no matter what. Don’t let anyone else tell you how to be. I’d have to say that’s how I differ as well. I decided to make real music that I really care about, and said ‘screw off’ to everyone who told me otherwise. I’m hoping that new artists will not give up on being their true selves.
EMURG: What is it like being an independent artist in the music industry? What are the positives and negative?
Keesha: What I love about being independent in this industry is that I get to make all of the decisions for myself. No one else gets to tell me what to do with my business. I’m in complete control of all of it. The downside of that is, you literally are your own boss meaning that you decide how money is spent. Usually when you love what you do so much, it’s easier to keep paying for it, rather than pay yourself. Does this make sense? And, when you are the one in charge, you tend to be a little tougher on yourself. You become your biggest critic and that’s not always a good thing.
EMURG: Have you worked with any big names in the industry?
Keesha: Yes, I’ve had the opportunity to work with major producers and songwriters both in Los Angeles and in Nashville. My band has also been lucky enough to open for Hal Kechum, The Grascals, Big Kenny (Big & Rich), The Bodeans, & Kinky Freidman to name a few.
EMURG: What is the greatest memory you have had while being an independent artist?
Keesha: I have a couple! However, looking out into the crowd and seeing a few hundred people dancing and singing along to my song, Wildflowers…that takes the cake!
EMURG: You recently released the song, “Don’t Get Me Wrong”, which showcases your talent as a country artist. Can tell us a little about the song and how you want it to connect with listeners?
Keesha: I love that song! I had a great time writing it with my friend, Warren Sellers. He’s just so talented. We decided we wanted to write something that had feeling and heart. It’s a situation that we feel everyone has dealt with or gone through in their life, and we just wanted people to relate to the feelings that it gives.
EMURG: What is your current view of the music industry and where do you think it is heading?
Keesha: Well, right now, I’d say it’s rather egotistical and down right wrong. I know that sounds negative, but unfortunately a lot of jerks have made it terrible for a lot of the older people in this business buy exploiting the newcomers in a negative way. Does this make sense? A few greedy, untalented people have sort of ruined it, but I think that because it’s made a lot of the oldies come out of hiding and stand up for the actual music because after all, this is what it’s all about. This goes back to what I was saying about never losing your real self and staying true to the music and what you love.
EMURG: What is the best piece of advice you can give to any aspiring musician who wants to establish themselves in the music industry?
Keesha: Besides being honest about who you are, never give up! This is a waiting game and persistence is key! You should constantly be practicing your craft and pushing as hard as you can! Never lose sight of your goals or your self. You’ll get 99 percent rejection and negativity. Just say thanks and keep trucking!
EMURG: What is on the horizon for you in 2014?
Keesha: I’m currently finishing up on my new record and I’m hoping to have it ready to go with the whole package no later than Spring 2014. They’re some goodies on there that I can’t wait to show off. I have grown so much as a writer and I truly believe that these are the best songs yet!
EMURG: Finally, if you want people to remember you for one song, what would it be?
Keesha: Wow,that’s a toughie! Hopefully one that is very well written!When the record is released, let’s hold a poll and see who loves which song the most and then I’ll decide!
Be sure to check out Keesha and all her musical ventures at her official website http://keeshascotthoganmusic.com/home