NHTE 168 Makenna and Brock

A country duo that splits their time between Missouri and Nashville, their first single went to the Top 40 on the Music Row charts and they’re now writing and recording toward a new project. They were Top 12 Finalists on The X-Factor in the first season of that show. They have been featured in national publications ranging from Rolling Stone to People Magazine, and the Washington Post, among others. They have also been featured on CBS.com, CNN.com, and MTV.com. They have opened for the likes of Sheryl Crow, Uncle Kracker, and Cowboy Troy, among others.

Show Quotes: 

(Brock) “It’s really funny, especially being around Nashville ‘cause we’ll be meeting friends downtown or going to different coffee shops and you gotta be careful what you say ‘cause you’ll say something and next thing you know two tables down somebody’s writing something down on a napkin.  You’re like, “What’d I just say?”

(Makenna) “They were wearing their lanyards that, ya’ know, we knew that they were in charge.  And so, I’m very big on taking opportunity where I can find it.  So for me that was kind of a no-brainer was to just follow her around until I got to know who she was and to meet her and to tell her a little bit about ourselves.  You know, find opportunity where you can.”

(Brock) “The more depth you have the better because labels and publishers and all these people, they want to see depth, they want you to have ten or 15, 20 good songs.  And the more songs you write and the more people you write with, the better your songs become and the more appealing you are to people in Nashville.”

(Makenna) “As an artist it’s really about putting out the best of the best.  We never want to be the people that settle for, ya’ know, ‘This is a good song, so, let’s put this out and not continue to try and produce something even better.’”

(Brock) “Musicians, they come and go.  We call ‘em mercenaries because they’re always just looking for the next job.”

(Brock) “You hear about the horror stories of those reality TV shows where you stand in line for hours and hours and hours just to get to see one of the producers and you gotta go see another producer and another producer.  We got lucky enough to skip all those and go straight to TV.”

(Brock) “There’s radio promoters all over the country calling stations every day.  But if you have something like The X-Factor to back it when a radio promoter calls… ‘Hey, we’ve got the first single from these guys that were on The X-Factor,’ they might, they listen a little bit more ‘cause it is a great launch pad because it’s exposure that you can’t even pay to get – you know, The X-Factor is – and so that definitely helped spread us and it still helps us book shows to this day.  We call up a venue and they’re like, ‘Oh I remember you guys from season one of The X-Factor.’”

(Makenna) “I think that there’s a lot more that comes from that personal connection, when you can actually really talk to somebody because you can’t get emotion and everything through an email.  And it’s so easy for people nowadays, I mean their inboxes just get flooded with email.  So it’s so easy for these venue owners to just be like, ‘Eh, ignore’ or ‘Delete.’  So when you’re actually on the phone right there they can’t just – I mean I guess they could just hang up on you.  I’ve never had that happen to me.”

Songs on this episode: 

“Burnin’ the Night Down”
“Keith Whitley Song”