An exclusive interview with Musiqtone
|Special to Musiqtone
In December 2005, You Gotta Know ended where it started (or relaunched): Texas and most specifically Dallas. But we didn't come back to honor Michael Celedon again but another Dallas talent who has seen the Gyspy Tea Room. She also won our You Gotta Know of the Year in the 1st annual Musiqwards, beating out Michael in a showdown for bragging rights to an energing hotbed of talent for a year. She has been trained under the best and is compared to Celine Dion and fellow Texan Jessica Simpson. She has three top ten songs at the same time on our Digital 40, joining Britney Christian as the only two to ever do that. She even has Broadway calling, hopefully one day landing in a big-name play.
And through it all despite living in Los Angeles most of the year, she still calls Dallas her home. Here is our interview with the 2005 You Gotta Know of the Year and December 2005 You Gotta Know, Lauren Briant!
Alan Ho: Thanks for taking time for this interview. So, tell our readers a little bit about yourself.
Lauren Briant: Well, I was raised in good ‘ol Dallas Texas with three brothers, two little brown puppies, the occasional hermit crab, and for a brief period of time, a three legged hamster…..don’t ask. I started performing in community theatres at a young age doing mainly musicals. After much begging, my parents finally gave in and agreed to let me start voice lessons when I was 12. I would say that’s when I started singing, but really I came into this world belting it out! Ask the doctor. =) Besides performing, I love going to movies, traveling, cooking, hanging with the fam and mystery novels. If I could eat one thing for the rest of my life, I’d eat cheesecake with whipped cream and fresh strawberries!
AH: Was music something you’ve always wanted to do and what was your first memory performing?
LB: As long as I can remember, I’ve loved performing. When I was little, really little, I would make my poor little brother put on shows with me for my family. I’d make up songs, skits, and dances in our living room in front of our fireplace. My two older brothers would be forced to come and watch for the small cost of a quarter! Needless to say they were less than thrilled.
AH: Texas has certainly gotten a reputation for bringing out some of music’s elite talent, Ryan Cabrera, Mike Jones, Jessica Simpson, etc. How has that helped your career?
LB: I am definitely a Texas girl! Following in the footsteps of great artists from Texas has made people turn their heads and perk up their ears a bit more. I really don’t think L.A. and N.Y. are the only big entertainment meccas now. Texas is on the map and hopefully I can help keep it there.
AH: Who are the influences in your music and in your own career?
LB: Hands down, Celine Dion. I have loved her voice, her music, her charisma ever since I started singing. In my opinion, she has one of the best female voices ever. I love how she carries herself and is mainly known for her talent, not her sex appeal. I also love Kelly Clarkson, another native Texan! That girl can sing. I love how she hasn’t let the crazy entertainment industry change what a great person she is. There are so many others but, those two are good for now.
AH: We ask everyone this: What is your philosophy on music???
LB: Music is loved by everyone. Who doesn’t like music? While we might like different types of music, everyone is touched by it in different ways. Music is always there for us through every stage of life. It’s one thing we all have in common.
AH: Why is music important to you?
LB: Music feeds my soul, as corny as that sounds. But it’s true. I love how it comes in so many different forms of creativity. A little bit of the writer or the artist is found in each song. I think it’s special to share a small part of their lives and emotions.
AH: Out of the songs you have playing or spinning out there, which one defines you?
LB: I love my song “Sometimes”. Ballads are definitely my favorite to sing. It’s the classic sad love song that everyone can relate to It builds and has an unreal key change that just takes it to that next level. I love belting my guts out and holding notes forever! Man! I love that! That song really came from a place that I was truly feeling at the time. As result, it has a ton of emotion that really shows in my vocals. I also love the actual musical track. It really pulls you in. Beautiful.
AH: I understand that Broadway is also pursuing you as well; what are your plans with that and does that mean we could be seeing you soon on stage?
LB: I would love to be on Broadway! I started acting before I started singing so it’s great to be able to do both at the same time! I am always auditioning for shows all over, including New York. We’ll see!
AH: Finally, what are your goals, short and in the long-term?
LB: I’d really love to get my music out there and have it stay out there. I know that’s probably a predictable answer but, that’s my goal! I’m just going to keep on working hard and hope that it pays off. If I never see my name in big lights, I know I’ll still be singing or acting somewhere because I love it.
The thing or things you’d be doing if it weren’t for music…
I love fashion! I’d think I would love to design clothing. Maybe be a buyer for Neiman Marcus, but definitely something creative.
What’s spinning in your music player right now?
I just downloaded Tristan Prettyman, The Fray, Blackeyed Peas, the musical Spamalot and Mariah Carey, just to name a few!
The things you can’t live without as a musician
As a singer, I HAVE to have Throat Coat. It’s an amazing tea that does wonders when you have to sing.
Living in Dallas or Los Angeles?
I will always call Dallas home, but currently I am reside in Los Angeles to be available for auditions. Not to mention, it’s tons of fun! I’m in Dallas a lot because all of my family is there. I also hop on a plane for Big D when I need some good Southern hospitality!
The Gypsy Tea Room in Dallas or the Kodak Theater in LA?
Hmmmm. That’s a great question. I love how intimate the Tea Room is, but because I’ve performed in quite a few musicals, I absolutely love a huge stage and comfy seats for the audience.
Music none of your friends (or fans) expect you to listen to
I love oldies! Anywhere from the roaring 20’s to the Beach Boys! When I get in my car and turn on the radio…. The local oldies station will be playing!
The ultimate venue to tour in
I’d love to perform in Europe in a really old Theatre. That would be amazing! Something like the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow. I was there a few years ago and you cannot believe the history lingering in the air. Truly amazing!
Which act or acts would you love to share the stage (or bus) with?
I’d love to hang in the bus or backstage with Gwen Stefani or The Blackeyed Peas. That would be so much fun! As for onstage, I would die singing beside Celine! Elton John would be quite amazing as well.
Non-musical talents you carry
I’m a pretty darn good cook! I watch the Food Network ALL the time! Dork?...... You have no idea!
Haha! I do eat healthy. I promise!
- My mom’s mashed potatoes and gravy
- Tostitos Tortilla Chips
Your most embarrassing moment on stage.
When I was a junior in high school, I was the lead in the musical “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat”. It was the day when a popular radio DJ came to see the show. There was a part where I walked out on a platform and then down some stairs during the intro music. Well, as you guessed, I totally tripped and fell down the stairs! To everyone’s dismay, I started singing right on cue while I lay there on the floor. All I could do was laugh while everyone started applauding! The best part of it was that the DJ mentioned my special moment on the radio the next day!
-Alan Ho is the founder and chief head of Musiqtone...and also the guy who writes incoherent articles whenever he wants to...oh yeah and the interview thing too. You can reach the big man at Musiqtone at email@example.com.
(C) 2005 Musiqtone. All Rights Reserved. Any part of this interview cannot be used without written express consent from both the representatives of Lauren Briant and Musiqtone.