15 Question Interview
1). When did you and your husband, Harold, first start creating music together as a couple?
It was early September of 2018 after I had convinced him to let me start writing the lyrics first. I had to tread lightly here to not hurt his feelings, but after he was OK with it, the lyrics just started flowing. That is when Bible Belt Blues was officially birthed.
2). How did you come up with the name Bible Belt Blues?
It was early March of 2018. I was toying around with creating a catchy name that would clearly describe who we are and what we do. The name Bible Belt Blues popped into my head! I said to myself, “There is no way that this name is still available,” but it was, so I quickly bought the .com and .org. Then I kept my mouth shut until September of 2018 when we were officially ready to use it.
3). How did you and your husband Harold meet?
We officially met online on Christmas Day in 2014 when he responded to an ad I placed in Christian Mingle asking for a Christian musician who would not set limits on what God could accomplish through him. Harold responded and the rest is history.
4). I understand that you and Harold have created your own music genre. How did this come about?
There is no other music out there quite like ours; it is distinctive enough to classify it as its own genre, but it does fall under the larger genre of Gospel Blues. After intensive study of the history of Mississippi’s blues we discovered Bentonia Mississippi’s school of music with its hauntingly beautiful D & E minor chords and its gritty guitar picking. It was the perfect backdrop for our full-fledged, biblically sound repentance songs, invitation songs, and songs for church revivals. It was a marriage made in heaven! We have added a bit of 70’s retro mixed in for good measure, special effects that can cross over genres, and our signature “weeping” harmonica.
5). How would you describe your music?
Original Bentonia blues influenced music with bold biblically sound lyrics.
6). What is the motivation for the creation of Bible Belt Blues?
Disturbed over the growing number of Contemporary Christian songs that lack depth, twist scripture, or where the music overpowers the lyrics, we set out to do the near impossible: to shift the focus of Christian music as we know it today- from entertaining the saved to evangelizing the lost. As musicians, Bible Belt Blues has dared to go where many Christian musicians have dared not tread: to publicly address sin, repentance, and salvation in their songs. As the lyricist for all of Bible Belt Blues’ songs, I discovered that there was a great need for repentance songs, invitation songs that are sung as a prayer, and songs for church revivals. That is where we decided to place our focus. We take our calling as Christian musicians seriously, believing that a song can soften a hardened heart to be receptive to the gospel of salvation through Jesus Christ. “It’s the lyrics that make a song Christian; the bolder, the better. Soft and fluffy lyrics do not win souls for Christ.”
7). For whom is your music written?
Bible Belt Blues’ music was created to facilitate healing, renewal, and restoration for those who are struggling with anger, confusion, depression, and for those who lack an intimate relationship with God. In addition to writing repentance, salvation, and church revival songs, Bible Belt Blues has also written songs for suicide prevention, to promote celibacy before marriage, for those who struggle to make time to pray, and for those who find it difficult to trust God when their life comes crashing down.
8). Bible Belt Blues has had an amazing year in 2019! Can you tell us about it?
Since January of 2019 Harold and I have released two Christian albums. “I’m Not Ashamed to Be a Christian” and “My God, My God” that we have created, recorded, mixed, mastered, and produced in our own home recording studio. Against all odds, we won the coveted 2019 Josie Music Award for Gospel/ Christian Duo after more than 23,000 nominations were submitted across all genres from around the globe.
9). What has been your most memorable experience so far with Bible Belt Blues?
Winning the 2019 Josie Music Award for Gospel/ Christian Duo was very emotional for me. I was literally trembling as I walked down the aisle! The second most memorable experience was the first time we heard one of our songs being played on the radio. It was in early March and the song was, “Through Christ Who Strengthens Me.”
10). Can you describe your songwriting process?
Before our songwriting sessions we both spend time in prayer seeking guidance from the Holy Spirit of God. I craft the lyrics first that sets the tonality and structure for the song; then Harold crafts the music. Everything has to be biblically sound; if in doubt I continue to search scripture for biblical accuracy. I am Harold’s vocal coach and producer and Harold does everything tech including the recording, mixing, and mastering. It is amazing that God gave us all the talents we needed to create music together as a couple. Neither one of us could have accomplished this without the other.
11). Tell us about your musical background?
Harold plays guitar, keyboards, and the harmonica. He learned guitar at the young age of 13 and has been playing for years with different church music ministries. He never sang much which is why his voice is still intact after all these years. As his vocal coach I discovered the full range of his voice which is perfect for the blues. I studied piano at a young age and have been a member of several church choirs. I also discovered I had a talent for lyric writing in my early twenties after several lyrics of mine placed in the American Song Festival Competition. That talent had been sitting dormant for many years until it suddenly blossomed again with the creation of Bible Belt Blues. I also discovered I had a talent as a vocal coach and also as a producer; talents that I did not know I had.
12). Is there a particular experience with the creation of your songs that you find to be humorous that you would like to share with us today?
The very first song that I wrote, “Down the Rabbit Hole,” is a full-fledged repentance song…something that is so lacking in churches these days, but so very much needed. After my husband read the lyrics he responded, “I can’t do that song; it’s too depressing” to which I responded, “Yes, you can.” Harold persisted, “I can’t do that song. Can’t you write a happy ending?” to which I replied, “No, I can’t. It’s a repentance song. They need to wallow in that for a bit.” Harold persisted, “I can’t do that song.” I responded again, “Yes, you can! You’ve got to own it.” The very first recording did not make the cut for the first album, but after adding a captivating beat and special effects, it was finally ready for release with our second album, “My God, My God.” This was when I discovered the full range of my husband’s amazing voice!
13). Have any of your songs received radio airplay?
Amazingly, thirteen of our twenty four original songs have already received radio airplay, primarily on Bill and Kat Radio’s Cross 104 Gospel Blues Hour Syndicated Program, and most recently on WNIR-Radio which airs in the US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the UK! We have also had some local airplay on WQFX in Biloxi, Mississippi. We are actively pursuing larger radio markets- all for God’s glory and for building Christ’s Kingdom.
14). What are your goals for Bible Belt Blues?
For Bible Belt Blues’ bold, biblically sound music to be played on larger Christian radio formats; To cross over genres and across countries reaching lost souls for Christ’s Kingdom; To inspire and challenge other Christian musicians to come up higher and be bolder with their Christian songwriting;
15). Tell us about your future plans?
We are currently working on our 3rd album while we are actively seeking bookings for concerts at churches and schools. www.BibleBeltBlues.org
All glory and honor goes to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.