Archives for posts with tag: Shantell Ogden

Shantell Ogden just released ghosts in the field

Shantell Ogden, photo - Angie Miller

Shantell Ogden, photo – Angie Miller

Shantell Ogden continues her partnership with Producer John Willis on ghosts in the field [Hip Farm Chic Records] after the acclaim of Better at Goodbye which garnered Americana Album of the Year by the International Music and Entertainment Association.

The seven tracks featured on ghosts in the field show continuity although Shantell continues to evolve as a songwriter and a vocalist.

Track one, “Ghosts In The Field” brings Shantell back to her roots of the three generation dairy farm that she grew up on. The most poignant reference is about her grandfather. A touch of old Tom Petty style riffage makes one feel like time travelling back twenty to thirty years while walking the north forty.

So much for day drinking and being drunk on a plane, “Who Comes First” could be a call and response song to all the bro-country drunken anthems about the significant other that is left at home while the person she loves goes off honky-tonkin’ and carousing. The slide guitar definitely brings to mind the drinking on a plane theme of last fall. In the song, the person says “if you reach for me when you’re hurtin’, I’ll be your glass of top shelf bourbon.” It might be something that an alcoholic can relate to and I am sure the theme touches a lot of people that have to deal with a partner’s alcoholism.

shantell-ogden_ghosts-in-the-fieldWhile the seven songs touch on a lot of themes, the most inventive ones of the bunch are “Blossom In The Dust” that reminds one of a lot of people. It can be a reflection on how people view themselves physically or emotionally, especially coming out of a relationship where there may be some emotional scars and baggage. It may take the right partner to see through all the emotional scars and be able to help heal an individual and restore self image and awareness through channeling their original inward beauty.

The other track that really shifts gears for Shantell is the final track, “As Long As You’re Mine” with an arrangement reminiscent of Curtis Mayfield’s “People Get Ready.” The feel grooves like a Dan Penn tune out of Muscle Shoals or maybe a Memphis Stax Gospel cut.

The background gospel choir brings to mind Gladys Knight or maybe something Aretha might go after. Shantell goes from the very Patty Griffin – Emmylou Harris Americana arrangement of “Blossom In The Dust” on track 5 to the soulful “As Long As You’re Mine” two tracks later.

The amazing thing is they are both great songs with two very distinct arrangements just minutes apart.

Shantell Ogden, photo - Chuck Eaton

Shantell Ogden, photo – Chuck Eaton

More than anything, it shows that Shantell is capable not only as an interpreter of her own creations but she could possibly be another Jeffrey Steele writing all over the studio walls of many Country Artist sessions finding her spark of genius climbing up the charts.

Songs like “God Counts Every Tear” could be another page of Little Big Town as much as it could be for this recognized independent Country girl’s muse.

  • Brad Hardisty, Nashville, TN thenashvillebridgeathotmaildotcom
Shantell Ogden, photo - Brad Hardisty

Shantell Ogden, photo – Brad Hardisty

Shantell Ogden  has been working on her third solo album with session Nashville Guitarist, John Willis whose credits include Kenny Chesney, Shania Twain, Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Taylor Swift, Gretchen Wilson among others as well as being honored as “Guitarist of the Year” in 2002 by The Academy of Country Music.

John Willis at Willisoundz, photo - Brad Hardisty

John Willis at Willisoundz, photo – Brad Hardisty

While tracking at Willisoundz, The Nashville Bridge was able to ask Shantell a couple of questions about the process and excitement going on with the current project.

Brad Hardisty / The Nashville Bridge: How did you end up choosing to work with John Willis?

Shantell Ogden: I was talking with a hit-songwriter friend, Jan Buckingham, and told her I was looking for someone who could help me with a ‘left-of-country’ project that would be more alternative/folk sounding. She replied, “That’s John Willis. He can do it all.” She connected us and I went by his studio, Willisoundz, to say hello and check out the space. I played him a couple of rough songs and we talked about where we could go with it. I decided on the spot he was the right person for me to work with on the project because he produces, engineers and plays. In addition to working with top country acts such as Taylor Swift, Luke Bryan and Kenny Chesney, he has also worked with Jewel, Anita Baker and India Arie.  Because of his broad range of experience across genres, I knew we could do what made sense musically for the songs and not just throw a banjo on it because we’re in Nashville.

John Willis, photo - Brad Hardisty

John Willis, photo – Brad Hardisty

TNB: Can you tell us about how you wrote the new song out in Cape Cod?

S.O.: One of my challenges as a writer is that I love ballads and the sadder the better! So, most of my favorite songs are slow or mid tempo- which creates an interesting dynamic when you put the songs in an album collection. I’ve written a lot with Bill DiLuigi, and when he came with me to Cape Cod to play Live from Center Stage, I told him we had to come back with an up-tempo happy song for the album.  I had the title idea from a quote I loved and Bill worked up a nice melody/groove idea; we wrote it sea side on the Cape our last day there. It’s called “Where You’re Not” and it’s about finally settling down after many years of looking. I love the way it turned out!

John Willis, photo - Brad Hardisty

John Willis, photo – Brad Hardisty

TNB: What do you feel is new about this project?

Shantell Ogden, photo - Brad Hardisty

Shantell Ogden, photo – Brad Hardisty

S.O.:  I’m excited about this record because it’s a real evolution for me as a writer/artist. As John puts it, it’s good to stretch your wings as an artist and that’s exactly what I’m doing with the album.

TNB: It looks like you have teamed up with some great songwriters.

Brad Hardisty, Shantell Ogden, John Willis at Willisoundz, September 2013

Brad Hardisty, Shantell Ogden, John Willis at Willisoundz, September 2013

S.O.: I’ve partnered with some of the best hit writers is Nashville, Jan Buckingham and Wood Newton, as well as some of my fast-rising songwriting peers Bill DiLuigi and Marcum Stewart for the project. As a result, the writing is fearless and honest. Thanks to John’s musical abilities, every song will have interesting textures and instrumentation. We aren’t making another cookie-cutter record here, and I can’t wait to share it!

– Brad Hardisty, Nashville, TN

“Hope to see you online!” – Shantell Ogden

Shantell Ogden

Shantell Ogden

Nashville singer/ songwriter Shantell Ogden will perform live on Friday, August 30 at the Cape Cod Community Media Center, located at 17 Shad Hole Road in Dennis Port, Massachusetts. The broadcast can be heard online at 7PM CST at:

Shantell Ogden has released two highly acclaimed independent albums and tours internationally. Shantell’s music has received coverage in Nashville’s The City Paper, Performer Magazine, Music News Nashville, Maverick Magazine in the UK and other media.

Ogden’s show kicks off the second half of Live From Center Stage’s 2013-2014 debut concert series that is bringing a provocative and highly infectious blend of world music and genre-defining recording artists in R&B, Jazz, Blues, Latin, Country and more to Cape Cod. Each concert is streamed via the Internet for listeners around the world, along with behind-the-scenes pre- and post-show interviews with the artists.

Shantell Ogden’s “Our American Song” that was co-written with Bill DiLuigi & Marcum Stewart and performed by Marcum Stewart and Andrea Villarreal will appear in Storm Rider starring Kevin Sorbo, Kristy Swanson, C. Thomas Howell and Danielle Chuchran. The movie was written and directed by Craig Clyde and produced by Bryce Fillmore and Dave Hunter.

Brad Hardisty, Nashville, TN