Tag Archives: Damage

Rachel Wammack Turned Her Doubts into a Dream Come True

It’s no surprise that at NECM we love championing women in country music, and one of the latest ladies we’re fangirling over is Rachel Wammack. In a few short years Wammack went from the new girl in Nashville to a New Artist to Watch, landing on numerous lists for 2019 including our own. Her self-titled EP, released less than a year ago, features four tracks including her debut single, ‘Damage.’ As a co-writer on each of the tracks, Rachel poured her heart and soul into this project – but there are so many more sides to the singer to get to know. We got to chat with Rachel recently about why she ever doubted a professional career in music, how her artistry has evolved through the years, and what’s next for this talented young lady.

To start at the beginning, Wammack had grown up surrounded by music, but when the Alabama native started piano lessons at the age of six she “hated it.”  Her mother insisted she stick with it for four years and by age 10 she had an entirely different perspective. Wammack had been transformed into a true music lover.  Inspired by the lyrics and melodies of artists like Adele, Sara Bareilles, and Carrie Underwood, Rachel began her craft of songwriting in middle school and continued to grow as a writer through high school. “In that time, I always wanted to sing – and I was like an attention hog – I always wanted to write but I never thought this will be my career. I thought, whatever I do, I’ll always do this on the side.”  Wammack began playing shows at local restaurants in high school when she caught the ear of a Sony Music Nashville executive. He gave Wammack his business card, but at 17 she wasn’t ready to jump into a career in the industry. “I told him I wanted to get a degree, I wanted to have something that no one could take away from me. So I got my degree [at University of North Alabama] but I continued to work on my craft,” Rachel said.

After graduating in 2016, the exec’s business card was still burning a hole in her pocket. Lucky for Rachel, the folks at Sony were still interested in hearing her play. That summer Wammack made the move to Music City but admitted that she still had doubts about doing the music thing full time. “I was like, you know what, there’s no way they’re actually going to be serious about me, I’m just going to do master’s school online while I’m in Nashville.” So Wammack spent her first 6 months in Nashville songwriting, bartending, and taking an online class working towards her Master’s degree. After she completed her first and only course in grad school Wammack knew what she had to do, “‘Rachel, dang it, just believe in yourself!” she said.

As someone who had spent the past decade or so writing solo, Rachel had some apprehensions about sitting down with other songwriters to collaborate. “I always thought if I ever try to do it as a career, I wouldn’t be able to be as creative as I want to be. I didn’t want to have to limit myself to some sort of mainstream thing, you know?” she said, adding the assumption that being a young female wouldn’t work in her favor. “It’s easy when you’re young or when you’re inexperienced to feel like, maybe my ideas aren’t good enough,” she described. But she gives credit to the grad school class she took for preparing her for collaboration. “It taught me just to stick up for myself, know that even though I’m a woman, I’m young, and I’m inexperienced, that my ideas are just as valid as someone who has 20 hits,” she said. “I was really blessed to write with several people who empowered me… One of those people was Mr. Tom Douglas who I wrote my single with.”

Rachel’s single, ‘Damage,’ was written about the stories she heard while working her first job in Nashville as a bartender, and they have one common theme, “love can do some damage.”  These were words that held true while she was working on her record. “My EP was very much a therapy project, getting over someone and trying to move forward for the first time in my life from an old relationship.” Now that she’s “over it” she has so much more to share with her fans and the world. “I’m excited to show some other flavors, some party songs, and just other perspectives on life that I’ve developed in the past year or so.” Rachel is feeling so inspired and she’s thrilled to be working on new music this year. After landing on plenty of Artist to Watch lists, our girl is fired up for 2019. “It makes me want to work really hard to just own that and to make my space in country music and in the world,” she proclaimed.

Wammack’s name has also landed on a handful of festival rosters this year, and she can’t wait to hit the stage. “This will be my first time ever playing a festival other than a bluegrass festival way back when I was 10!” she laughed and began listing them off: Tortuga, Country Lake Shake, Faster Horses, and Touchdowns & Tunes. “I’ve just always been a huge fan of live music and going to other people’s shows, so it’s going to be really really special playing my first festivals and getting to play many.” We’ll also get to see Wammack this May as she’s scheduled to stop in New England at the Country 102.5 Street Party in Boston and the Mohegan Sun Wolf Den in Connecticut. “I am coming into 2019 feeling very supported and so I just want to make my fans proud,” she said.

If we’ve learned anything from Wammack’s journey it’s that you can’t stop cream from rising to the top. Despite Rachel’s earlier apprehensions, the songstress has no regrets. “Honestly, I’m glad that it ended up the way it did because it was exactly how it was supposed to be.” Rachel’s success is a testament to her undeniable talent. We can’t wait to hear what’s to come this year and can only hope to hear more of Wammack’s powerful voice streaming through our radio waves.

You can check out Rachel’s EP featuring her debut single ‘Damage’ on Spotify, Apple Music, and more.

Make sure to follow Rachel Wammack on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

NECM’s WCW Spotlight: Rachel Wammack

We, at New England Country Music, want to bring on the new year with a fun series spotlighting women in country music. While the acronym WCW, standing for Women Crush Wednesday, is often used for physical attraction, that is not the case here. This series will feature talented women who are crushing it in the country music scene.

This week we’re featuring Rachal Wammack, a twenty-five-year-old singer, songwriter, and musician from Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Which of course gets you singing the Lynyrd Skynyrd song: ‘Now Muscle Shoals has got the Swampers… And they’ve been known to pick a song or two… Yes they do.’ The ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ girl dabbled in the art of songwriting and finished her first write before she reached her teenage years. In middle school, she joined the marching band where she played marimba in the percussion section. When Wammack got a bit older, she played the piano and sang at bars in and around Muscle Shoals. It was at one of these gigs, when she was seventeen, that she was approached by Jim Catino of Sony Music Nashville. In an interview with The Boot, Wammack said: “Catino was at the restaurant I was playing at in my hometown, and he was staying at the hotel that was connected to the restaurant. So it was like fate, because I’m just doing my regular thing, playing covers, throwing in a couple of originals, and then he’s like, ‘Hey, what are these originals that you played tonight? They’re really amazing.” Catino and Wammack stayed in touch and she mentioned: “He ended up being a mentor to me all throughout college.” After finishing high school, staying true to her roots, she attended the University of North Alabama to pursue a degree in English. While at UNA, Wammack she participated in pageants and won the Miss University of North Alabama. Shortly after graduating from UNA, she moved to Nashville and worked as a bartender. In early 2018 she signed with Sony Music Nashville/RCA. Her years spent participating in the drumline of a marching band, combined with the poise and speaking skills learned during pageantry, helped to prepare her for the discipline needed for a successful career in Nashville.

In April of 2018, Rachel Wammack released her first EP. The self-titled album was produced by the award-winning Dan Huff. Her debut single, ‘Damage,’ was written during one of those typical Nashville songwriting sessions with the legendary writers Tom Douglas and David Hodges. It’s a real-life story from Wammack’s time spent as a bartender. Another track from her EP, ‘My Boyfriend Doesn’t Speak For Me Anymore,’ was described by Rolling Stone as “mixing the power pop pipes of Adele with the women-first attitude of Loretta Lynn.” Each of her songs is as unique as that revolving restaurant where she first met Jim Catino.

Though fairly new to the country music scene, Rachel Wammack already has a few big accomplishments under her belt. She has been recognized by Rolling Stone Magazine. They listed her as “one of ten new country artists you need to know.” She made her Grande Ol Opry debut in September 2018. In early January, Wammack was named to the all-female Bobby Bones Show Class of 2019. Bones chose her as one of only five female artists that he believes has what it takes to make it.

Rachel Wammack rocked her very first tour with Brett Young. The CMT on Tour: Here Tonight 2018 made its way to our neck of the woods and stopped at The House of Blues in early December. She put on one amazing performance that night. It was hard to believe that the gorgeous woman in the rainbow sequin skirt and knee-high boots was the opening act! Wammack commanded the stage and the crowd loved every moment of her performance.

We can’t wait to see what the future holds for this WCW.

Rachel will be performing at the Country 102.5 Street Party on May 25th! Along with Justin Moore, Chase Rice, Devin Dawson, and Jimmie Allen.

Be sure to download ‘Damage’ from her album ‘Rachel Wammack’ on iTunes here.

You can stay connected with Rachel Wammack by following her on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Say tuned for our next WCW spotlight which is set to hit our page on Wednesday, February 27th.