13-year-old singer Summerlyn Powers (well, she’ll be 14 in about a week) has just released her debut EP “Dixie Dust.” Produced by Andrew Rollins (ABC’s Nashville Soundtrack), the release features four tracks which this young talent from Fairhope, Alabama co-wrote with award-winning singer/songwriter Pam Tillis.
Summerlyn’s first song, “Alabama Kinda Girl” was released when she was just 11 years old, and the official music video features Tillis. Notable live performances include appearances at the Country Showdown Talent Competition, Fairhope AL’s Bay Of The Holy Spirit Jubilee featuring members of A&E’s Duck Dynasty, and the Shrimp Festival in Gulf Shores.
Her first single from the new EP is currently playing on country radio, and she just released a music video for it as well, which you can see below.
We got a chance to ask her a few questions, scroll down for the interview!
Nice to meet you Summerlyn, tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m a singer/songwriter from a cute little town called Fairhope, AL, about 45 minutes from the beach! I’m currently 13, turning 14 on November 1st! I’ve attended private school my entire school age life until this year. Because of my crazy schedule, my parents and I thought it would be a good idea to try homeschooling. It’s a big adjustment, but it’s working out great! I enjoy traveling with my family, going to the river with my friends and finding cool new fashions that compliment my style!
You recently released your debut EP “Dixie Dust”, where you cowrote all 4 tracks with Pam Tillis. What was the best part about working with such a legend of country music?
Learning all kinds of things about life AND about the music industry from her are some great highlights. Also, having a mentor with such experience and creative knowledge, as Pam does, is a wonderful plus!
You are pretty young…so where did the inspiration for your songs come from?
Receiving ideas for songs comes from my everyday life. About 98.7777% (exaggeration of course) of songs are about relationships between a boy and a girl or whatever, but that really isn’t my main experience in songwriting or in life. So, I write about faith, family, friends, struggles of my own or struggles of others and more!
(The video for her first single, “Alabama Kinda Girl”)
What training have you received in music?
I started playing the violin in the first grade (6 yrs. old). About age 10, I decided to try guitar because it was hard to sing and play the violin! That’s when I started voice lessons. Last year, I began piano lessons and my next instrument I really want to learn is banjo! I goof off on the ukelele a little too!
What is your favorite subject in school and why?
My favorite subject would be Current Events. In this class, I have to research a current event, find pros and cons on the subject, then debate about it in class. I really enjoy the debate part!
Who are your role models?
Pam Tillis is an up close and personal role model for me. She’s been in the music business her entire life and still entertains crowds on a daily basis! Carrie Underwood is also a role model for me. I love how she shares her faith through her music.
You do a lot of work with charities, tell us about that.
My first charity I was privileged to work with was the George Clayton Ladd Childhood Cancer Foundation. I am friends with his family and this little boy holds an extra special place in my heart. I
even co-wrote a song about Clayton called “Angel Face”. I’ve also helped with the Women’s and Children’s Hospital of South Alabama…an amazing place!!
Tell us about your trip to Brazil last year…anything crazy happen?
The trip to Brazil was so wonderful!! The people and the food…just incredible! This was my first mission trip with my church. We built a church for the people in this small town and I helped with vacation bible school. Of course, I sang to them every day! The only crazy thing that happened was when the day would end, and I would get back on the bus, the kids would chase the bus down the street while yelling my name! I felt like a rock star!
Tell us something people would be surprised to know about you?
I really enjoy archery and I play most music by ear. That’s why I began taking piano lessons, so I could learn to read music. I played violin by ear for 6 years.
What’s next for you in your career?
Right now, I’m enjoying promoting my new EP, Dixie Dust! I have a few festivals coming up…booking new
shows all the time. Next, I hope to keep writing and produce a full album in the next year or so! Just keep
doing what I love…singing, performing and meeting new fans!
We ask everyone for a selfie to “keep it real,” can you send us one? : )