As an artist, finding your voice is paramount. Being pushed in many directions it is often difficult for artists to hone in on exactly what they want to say and more importantly how to say it. For rising Canadian artist, Megan Dawson, this journey required plenty of experimentation before settling on the right mix. Drawing influence from everywhere from Shania Twain to Taylor Swift and even Britney Spears and Avril Lavigne, Dawson has found a brand of music that is both vibrant and serious, leaving listeners always wanting more.
Recently, we had the chance to chat with Dawson about her musical journey, finding confidence, and her new single, Influence.
Worlds of Country: When did you know that music was what you wanted to pursue?
Megan: I’ve always loved music, and I’ve always loved singing, but I just did it in private, and did not tell anybody that I did it. And then it was probably about four or five years ago, where I got exposed to playing on a stage for the first time with some family friends. And I kind of just caught the bug of like, Wow, I love this, this is really fun. And at the time, I didn’t play any instruments or anything. So it was strictly just a straight up a love of music, writing songs, even though I had no instrument to do it with., I would say kind of the whole flip in my brain of like, I think I could see this as a thing I want to pursue was probably about five years ago. Yeah.
Worlds of Country: What led to the decision to finally open up and tell everyone that you’ve been doing this all along?
Megan : Confidence! I feel like you just kind of got to get out of your own way to a certain extent, and just kind of let it happen. And I love the feeling that artists when I go to a concert, it brings me like an immense amount of joy. And when I got a little taste of what I could potentially do for other people. I was like, I think this is the thing, I think we should give it a go like a solid go.
Worlds of Country: So, at that point five years ago, what would you say was your first step then towards making this a reality.
Megan: The first thing was buying my first guitar. I knew that I wanted to take songwriting to a serious level. And I really wanted to give it a solid go. But I really wanted to have an instrument to do it with. So, I went and bought my first guitar, and I just through YouTube, and Google learned how to play four chords, and started writing songs. And I would say, that was definitely a very pivotal point in really gaining perspective on what I could do and what kind of music I could write. And so that was kind of a, I would say, one of the most pivotal parts of that shift.
Worlds of Country : So how would you describe your musical style.
Megan: It’s got a lot of different things going on. Um, my influences come from, like Avril Lavigne, to Britney Spears to Taylor Swift, Shania Twain. So, all over the place. And I feel like to a certain extent, my style and the way that I sing music, the way I write music has taken little pieces of all of that. So, it definitely has like that country tone to it with some pop, hooky, melody type things. And it’s just kind of merged into one thing, and therefore kind of created my style.
Worlds of Country : How did you sort of come up with this blend that you have now?
Megan : A lot of trial and error, experimenting, and almost going like, a little more pop for a bit, a little bit more of like the dark, moody and then kind of the bright and happy and just kind of like going a little bit, like, further into one or the other and then trying to find a happy medium within all of them. So, I would say that was kind of the best way I could explain how it kind of worked out.
Worlds of Country : Can you tell us the story behind your new single, Influence?
Megan : Absolutely! It’s really cool, because it’s my first time as an artist, singing on a song that I’m not a writer on. But the song came into my world through my producer. He showed me this catalog of songs, and this one was written by Madeline Merlo, Dave Thompson and Emma-Lee and there was just something about the whole concept of the song, the melodies, the hook that really resonated with me stylistically, but also where I was at in my life and where I still am at. And so the song itself is really the way that I’ve been able to kind of bring my story to life. It’s about being fully immersed in this feeling of love that’s out of your comfort zone, but it’s bringing out the best parts of you and you’re just kind of rolling with it, you don’t really know where it’s gonna take you. But that’s kind of the excitement of it. And yeah, so I think that’s kind of like the overall message that I kind of hope comes out in the song. It’s been very cool to kind of bring my story to life through the story that was written by the amazing writers. So yeah.
Worlds of Country : What’s next for you after Influence?
Megan: Oh, my gosh, well, I mean, it’s kind of a crazy time. And my overall goal this year is to just release a lot of music. I’ve been so grateful to have the time recording and the time writing to be able to kind of build up my catalogue and get those songs prepared., I am very excited to just release a lot of new music. So I’d say that’s kind of the next thing. So just kind of keeping the train rolling with that.
Worlds of Country : Five years into the industry now, what would you say has been the biggest lesson you’ve learned in that time?
Megan: Oh, my God. I mean, I think one of my mentors from very early on in my career, Brian Farrell, he still is one of my best mentors, he told me that no matter what you’re going to get nos, you’re going to get yeses, there’s going to be opportunities, there’s going to be times that you completely fall flat on your face. But if you come back to who you are, and you just know that your journey is unique, and it’s never going to be like anyone else’s, that’s kind of the overarching thing that you have to keep in mind. You kind of keep shooting for things and like get shut down from things. And so, I think because it’s such a roller coaster, if you have yourself to come back to and the reason why you started doing it in the first place that’s always like the most important thing, and sometimes I’m not always like, as attentive to that. And sometimes you lose sight of it, and sometimes you’re really aware of it.