The IMC Magazine Issue 14/April 2016 - Page 26

well mid-week. The thing that happens on Monday nights is people can watch at home, you can put your feet up. You can grab a drink. You can be in your pajamas. It doesn't matter, right? Just relaxing and watching from home. People say 'thank you for your music, it's uplifting. I had a horrible day at work but now I feel better'. So that's why I'm doing mid week up lifter shows too. A lot of my music has powerful messages behind it and I try to pick songs with uplifting words and lyrics.

Do you have a catalog of songs stashed away that you have written over the years or do you write on the go, let's say when you get the inspiration to write?

I haven't written very much because when I write it has to come from a deep emotion. Like, I have to feel something strongly and all of a sudden it comes out in a song. I'm not someone who writes songs all the time. I don't have that many but I have some written down that, I just jotted down on a piece of paper, or on whatever's close and put it away for a while.

Sometimes I find it a couple of years later and think 'oh, this is alright. I should make this into a song'. There's papers scribbled everywhere, somewhere.

Do you write your own music for the songs as well?

Absolutely. That's my favorite part. I guess it's the classical background. I hear melodies very easily, especially using a guitar. It's my favorite instrument to write songs because you just start plucking away at it and I start to hear melodies come out. The words I usually find a little more difficult. For me.

Where did the nickname 'Songbird' come from?

One day a fan said to me, 'Oh you sing so beautiful, you sound like a bird'. I thought that's interesting because songbirds they sing, not to sound beautiful as we all know. But they usually sing for a purpose, right? They're singing to communicate to the other birds in their group or to call a mate or or to signal danger.

When I sing, I really don't sing just to sound beautiful, though it's nice people enjoy it. But I like to sing to pass on a good message. So, with a purpose, just like songbirds.

What does 2016 hold in store for Nicole 'Songbird' Coward ?

Oh, it's exciting. Got a lot of things booked. Doing Canada Blooms. A fundraiser for CKOL in Campbellford, the community radio station, they have been so wonderful to me. April 23rd at Humble Beginnings. And lots of touring in Ontario this summer. We hope to tour across Canada this September and go out to B.C. because I've never been out there to play.

Do you produce your own songs or do you have a recording company that you work with?

No, I've always worked with another producer at the recording studio and I've worked with a few different producers over the years. My first album I did with Steve Sherman who has his own studio here, out in Scarborough. And then the second album, the 'Strong Enough For Love' album, that one I did with Derek Downham who actually plays in a popular rock band called 'The Beauties'. 

He did a lot of instrumentation on it which gave it a really nice tune to it, a lot of piano which I usually don't use in my music but it turned out really beautifully. Lately, I've been working with a producer called Chris Hess. He's fantastic. And we did the song 'I Love Me' which was my most recent release. And that's a really fun song. It ended up having a little 'blue grassy', country feel to it. He did a great job.

I love 'Why Don't You care', the new one. I think that's the first song I sent you at Q108, probably, that you heard of mine. The remake of 'Why Don't You Care', so the second one was produced by Sean Michael Paddison, who's been a good friend of mine for many years. He did just an amazing job with recording my voice. And I have a very soft voice and I like to use little nuances so it can be tricky for a producer to capture that. But he did a very, very good job on that single, 'Why Don't You Care'.

Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to talk with us. It was an extreme honor and pleasure to get to know a little bit more of the lady with the amazing voice and powerful lyrics. We look forward to more great music from you and wish you all the best in 2016.