Sedona is a singer, songwriter, and student. She has now released two singles and has an EP in the works. Sedona talked to us at Nerds and Beyond about her musical background, inspiration for her songs, and hearing herself on the radio for the first time.
Nerds and Beyond: Sedona, when did you become interested in music?
Sedona: I’ve been interested in music my whole life. I grew up going to concerts with my parents and have always been drawn to musical instruments from a really young age. By the time I was 16 I had already seen over 100 live concerts and could play 5 different instruments. I feel very lucky to have been immersed in the art my whole life.
Nerds and Beyond: How would you describe your style?
Sedona: I’m still sort of figuring that out. I guess I would describe my style as pop, rock, indie and/or folk, or I think “singer-songwriter” is a genre? I really am trying to figure out what genre “Sedona” is; I think it has changed a lot since I first started writing music and continues to change [with] every song I write. You will hear that my first two singles, “Bottom of Your Bottle” and “Let You Go,” are very different styles. But overall I think my ability to write different styles is a part of who I am as an artist.
Nerds and Beyond: Is there a way you generally write your songs (like lyrics first, etc.)?
Sedona: For me, there isn’t one way a song comes about. My notes on my phone are flooded with random ideas and thoughts, so sometimes I’ll start there. But other times I will just be playing my guitar and a melody will come to mind or a chord progression and I go from there. I think the process is always different but every song initially starts with something that inspires me or a personal experience. I find great importance of writing about real experiences that people can relate to.
Nerds and Beyond: You can play guitar. Are there any other instruments that you play, and are there any you’d like to learn?
Sedona: When I was younger, I taught myself how to play multiple different instruments. It started off with the drums and clarinet, and played those instruments throughout my middle and high school years. And when I broke my leg when I was 14, I was super bored sitting around, so I decided to teach myself how to play guitar, piano, and ukulele. That’s pretty much when I started writing my own songs. I would really love to learn how to play the mandolin or harmonica. I think those instruments are super cool.
Nerds and Beyond: What was it like to hear yourself on the radio for the first time?
Sedona: I guess it was simply unreal and very unexpected. It felt so crazy to see my name on the screen in my mom’s car… I kept saying, “Oh my gosh!! That’s ME!!” I didn’t expect my first release ever to be on the radio, but it was so awesome to see my hard work getting recognition. My songs are like my children to me, so I am very proud of “Bottom of Your Bottle” being heard nationwide. Makes me wanna cry just thinking about it.
Nerds and Beyond: So you’ve released a single “Bottom of Your Bottle” recently, and “Let You Go” today. Where did the inspirations come for those?
Sedona: Both of these singles are about personal experiences and were written in a time I was overcome with emotion. “Bottom of Your Bottle” was about an ex who drunk-called me and told me he missed me. I was so over him and over that relationship and had way moved on past it, but he obviously wasn’t moved on. I am not the type of person to just crawl right back to someone when they want me back, and I think I felt this song was almost about women empowerment and the whole idea of being an “independent woman that don’t need no man.” Overall I think it is a super fun, catchy song that people can relate to in different ways.
My newest single, “Let You Go,” comes from a more sad time in my life. When I wrote it, I had just moved to college and I was losing a bunch of some really good friends from home. This song was about one of my closest friends. It hurt because I was very sad about having to be far away, but it seemed as if they were thriving and were making new friends and forgetting about me. There was a point where I met up with them, and they were a totally different person than the person I knew. It was heartbreaking. So that’s when I wrote “Let You Go.” Writing this song and how I felt was the emotional release I needed. I also think a bunch of people can relate to this song and the feeling of losing someone very important in your life.
Nerds and Beyond: You’ve sung on stage with Train. Has that changed the way you approach performances?
Sedona: I feel incredibly lucky that I’ve gotten to watch many amazing artists perform such as Train. By watching how bands interact with the crowd or how they act on stage is how I’ve learned what to do on stage. So as much as I’ve pretended in my room that I’m on a huge stage, nothing compares to the complete rush that you get when you’re on stage in front of thousands of people. That rush is something I’ve gotten to experience thanks to the band Train. I’ve been lucky to get to sing a few times with them and I honestly really just act like I know what I am doing and it seems to be well received in the audience. There are many artists with great stage presence, but one of my favorites is Matt Nathanson. He is just hilarious and confident on stage, he doesn’t take himself too seriously, and I strive to be like that.
Nerds and Beyond: What is one thing you want our readers to know about you?
Sedona: One thing you should know about me is that I am historically known to be a completely shy and reserved person. I still hate having to order at restaurants, and talking in front of a classroom full of kids is one of my worst nightmares. However, when I found my passion, which is singing and sharing my music with others, I somehow turned into a whole different person. Even Pat Monahan [lead singer of Train] has pointed out how different of a person I am on stage. When I am on stage I am outgoing, confident and fearless. I want to show other people that are shy or quiet that it is possible to break out of your shell. Even if you don’t think you can do it, you can. Find the thing that makes you feel most confident and keep doing it and doing it. When I found my confidence through being on stage, I found my passion and ultimately found my happy place.
You can purchase Sedona’s newest single on iTunes or stream it on Spotify. I also highly recommend listening to “Bottom of Your Bottle” — it has quickly become a personal favorite. Be sure to watch for EP titled “Middle of the Night” coming out later this spring!
You can also catch Sedona on Train’s cruise “Sail Across the Sun” February 14-18, 2020.