The hallmark of any great artist is authenticity. It doesn’t matter if the artist in question is fifty years or fifteen weeks into a career. If you want to connect with others through music in a meaningful way, authenticity is key. Now, it’s time to meet Missy Lancaster. She has ‘’it” in spades.
Missy, a twenty-one year old from Picton (the closest country town to Sydney) is in possession of a guitar case full of great songs and a voice that somehow resonates with that little antenna attached to the top of our heads that can make the hair on the back of your neck stand on end when you hear something special.
Ask Missy to discuss her country music idols and she’ll rattle off everyone from Taylor Swift to Australia’s Troy Cassar-Daley – with a dozen more in between.
“I am a country music singer,” Missy explains when quizzed. ““I’m proud to be a country singer. It’s such a diverse genre of music and I think it’s ok to bring different elements into the country base. I’ve grown up mainly listening to country and that’s the style that comes naturally to me.”
But there’s something else in the mix too…imagine if Katy Perry made a country album – that’s what Missy Lancaster sounds like. It’s country-pop with a rock edge.
Career wise, Missy Lancaster has done a lot of the hard yards herself and has achieved a great deal in a relatively short period of time. She shares many of the same pop sensibilities and work ethic as some of her earliest influences, such as Shania Twain and Swift as well as her Australian idols Kasey Chambers and The McClymonts.
“Kasey Chambers and The McClymonts are the artists that made me want to become a country singer,” she continues, “They approach music in different ways and I find the way they approach music inspiring.”
Missy herself keeps good company. The ARIA Country Album Chart saw her hit #9 with her second independent EP she simply called, Missy. It’s little wonder industry eyes and ears had the emerging songstress in their sights. In May 2016, Missy Lancaster was signed to a worldwide direct recording contract with Sony Music Australia.
“I was half way through a teaching degree and I realised I just wanted to take my music as far as I could,” she says of the career move. “So I left university and went to Nashville and recorded Missy. It’s crazy to think that the independent record I made myself has now been picked up by Sony Music.”
In Nashville Missy worked with producer Lindsay Rimes ((Troye Sivan, LoCash, The McClymonts)) to cut the five tracks that made the final EP.
Alongside her own songs, Missy has written with such names as Josh Kerr (who co-wrote Country-Pop star Kelsea Ballerini’s #1 hits ‘Love Me Like You Mean It’ and ‘Dibs’), Jason Duke (who also co-wrote ‘Dibs’ for Ballerini and just scored a cut on Keith Urban’s latest album), Phil Barton (scored a #1 with Lee Brice’s “A Woman Like You”, Georgi Kay (APRA & ARIA Award winner) and the aforementioned Lindsay Rimes.
“I love writing songs,” says Missy, “And I also love the challenge of taking a song by another writer and making it my own. The songs on Missy really suit where I’m at. I’m twenty-one. I’m having fun and my heart is definitely not broken (laughs). These songs showcase my personality.”
To say the ensuing collection of songs impressed critics and Missy’s new legion of fans would be an understatement. The Missy EP carries the imprimatur of an artist who has arrived. The songs, the singing and the arrangements are fully realised and the EP will now be given the much wider release it deserves through Sony Music.
The Missy EP features the songs; ‘That’s What I’m Talking About’, ‘Forever 21’, ‘Don’t Wanna Say Goodnight’, ‘All Kinds Of Crazy’ and ‘Back Row’.
So, what’s next? Well, Missy Lancaster takes the big jet plane, from that small Australian country town, to Nashville, where she will begin work on her debut album. Look out world here she comes!
The EP Missy is released through Sony Music Australia on July 8.