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Live & Local with Maggie Renfroe

Catch Maggie Renfroe with Josh Carson Saturday, Dec. 23 @ The Society Garden

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Many Middle Georgians may know Macon’s own Maggie Renfroe from trying out on Season 11 of The Voice, but recently the 18 year old has been working her way into the Nashville music scene and studying music business at Belmont University. Renfroe will be playing in Macon December 23rd with Josh Carson, a musician she has known and co-wrote music with since she was 14.  I spoke with Renfroe about her education in Nashville, why she plays guitar right-handed although she’s a lefty, and hot chicken.

What do you think is the most interesting or eye opening thing that you’ve learned in school so far?
The first day I knew I was where I was supposed to be was when I walked into class and we analyzed Taylor Swift’s new music video. But we’ve also just had so many cool opportunities to see people like Julia Michaels. She sang a few songs and then she said I’ve a good friend that I write with that lives in Nashville and he’s going to come and play a few songs with me. Keith Urban walked out. And this was just a room of maybe 100, 200 kids that were in the music business school.

You mentioned Taylor Swift. Are you a big fan?
I am. She was one of my early on inspirations. I’m not real sure what she’s done with this last album [laughs]. It’s definitely different. When I was eight years old she was the reason I wanted to start playing music. I feel like I always will give her credit for why I want to play.

What was it about her that made you want to play music?
Her writing was just so great. But of course my 8 year old self asked for a pink sparkly guitar for Christmas because I had seen her in concert and saw her sparkly guitar. I’m actually left handed, but this pink sparkly guitar was right handed and they didn’t have a left handed version of it. I got that pink sparkly guitar. Ever since then I’ve been playing guitar right handed just because I wanted that pink guitar.

Where do you get your inspiration to write music?
Life experiences. Coming into college I’ve already seen a difference in my writing just because I’m in a new stage of life. I have begun to co-write a lot more. That’s a big thing in Nashville. One of my very best friends I’ve met lives right beside me in the dorm and she is just an incredible songwriter. On Monday nights we meet in one of our rooms and break down what’s happened from the weekend or what we’ve been going through.

You are playing with Josh Carson this Saturday. What do you think it is about Josh’s style that mixes well with yours? I have played with other people since being in Nashville and it’s just never the same. You know I think probably the biggest thing would be just how long we’ve played together. The first songs that we learned, he taught me the song. And then he would fill in harmony or teach me what harmony to do with him. Really [we’ve just put in] so much time and work. . . I feel like me and Josh have really spent the time to hone in on our vocals. I do think his voice is more seasoned and my voice is more young. I think that brings a good mix and a unique tone.

Can you tell me about one of the new songs you will be playing at the show?
One of the songs we are going to play is a Drew and Ellie Holcomb song. They’re a married couple from Nashville that have a really unique harmony. It’s called “Anywhere But Here” and it’s about going different places and once they’re together it’s great wherever they are. We choose songs based on what we like more than the deep meaning of the song when we cover stuff. But I do think that this song is great because we’re back together for a show. I think that kind of represents it well that even though we’re far apart, when we get back together our sound is just like it has been before I moved.

Which hot chicken restaurant do you prefer?
Oh my gosh, this is gonna be awful [laughs]. Everyone that I have met there has said don’t try it. So, I really have never had it. I think it’s one of the touristy things. It’s crazy because life when you actually live there is pretty different than people that come visit. Anyone that goes to Nashville I would tell them to go to Lulu. It has the best veggie burger. I’m sure at some point I’ll try hot chicken but everyone I’ve gone out with has said don’t try it. It’s not as good as people say it is [laughs]

Catch Maggie Renfroe with Josh Carson Saturday, Dec. 23 @ The Society Garden

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