As I’ve grown and gained so much experience in life, I find I have less bandwidth for the small stuff. Not when it comes to using my voice anyway. I feel very blessed to have a voice and to have been able to use it for (hopefully) good things, beautiful things. Increasingly, it’s a standard I want to stick to. Whatever is good and true and hopeful, I want to be a part of it where I can. I want to light things up, as long as I am here on earth, why not? My new single, “Good Trouble” was born out of this very revealing season we are experiencing as a country and as a culture. It’s like we’ve been given a birds’ eye view of some extremely upsetting events, and it opens our eyes to some wounds that I, very naively, believed were close to healed. John Lewis’s passing and his eloquent words over the years really got my attention. I couldn’t get “Good Trouble” out of my head for a few months. Until it became a song.
I had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Leigh Nash. Growing up in the Texas Hill Country of New Braunfels, Leigh Nash officially started her music career singing country music and learning old country songs on the guitar when she was just 12 years old. With a desire to be on the stage, she started calling clubs on her own to book herself to perform. It was in the early 90’s when she met guitarist and songwriter Matt Slocum and together they formed the band Sixpence None The Richer, a famed pop group that went on to win numerous awards and accolades, including two GRAMMY® Award nominations. In their career, Sixpence None The Richer recorded four full-length albums. Their debut, which was released when Nash was just 16, was 1994’s critically acclaimed LP The Fatherless & The Widow. In the years that followed, the band released numerous timeless songs and huge radio hits, from the GRAMMY-nominated “Kiss Me” to “There She Goes,” among many others.
Today, Nash is based in Nashville working as a solo artist and songwriter, and she recently signed with Visionary Media Group. Leigh Nash will release an inspirational and highly anticipated new single, “Good Trouble,” featuring GRAMMY-nominated Ruby Amanfu, Friday, February 5.https://content.thriveglobal.com/media/95b5c66fb46df8e392774b1161151e32
Thank you so much for joining us in this series! Our readers would love to get to know you a bit better. Can you tell us a bit of the ‘backstory’ of how you grew up?
Thank you for having me! I grew up in south central Texas — in a small town between Austin and San Antonio, called New Braunfels. My mother was a teacher and my dad an entrepreneur. I have one sister, two years older who I loved to torment. She lives in Austin, as well as my mom. I loved music early on, especially country music.
Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?
When I was about 12 or 13, I called a dance hall close to our house called Heidelberg Hall. I asked for the singer of the band that played there a lot, Jay Eric was his name. I very nervously asked if the band would back me up if I chose a few covers. He couldn’t have been sweeter and he and the band obliged. The first time I sang in front of the relatively small Sunday evening chord, I was hooked. I believe the first song I chose was “You Ain’t Woman Enough to Take My Man”. It still makes me laugh thinking about what it must have been like to be an adult woman being spun around the dance floor to that song, sung by a child! A few years later, I met Matt Slocum, and we started our band, Sixpence None the Richer. A not-at-all country band, but one I am very proud to have been a part of.
Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your career? What was the lesson or take away that you took out of that story?
I recall wearing a very pretty black crushed velvet dress with pink lining for a club show in Paris. I walked up some little steps, feet away from the microphone and the dress split right up the back. Nowhere to escape, I just stayed up there and performed without really moving at all. There was no backstage to run to. I feel like there’s a lot of these stories. That either speaks to my inability to choose a well fitted item, or a rapidly growing derrière.
What would you advise a young person who wants to emulate your success?
I heard it as a kid and all along the way — if you love it, keep doing it. I know that sounds terribly trite, but it’s also very true.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
There have been so many people, my parents, to start, for letting me pursue this line of work from such an early age. And since then, literally every person I’ve worked with and SO many gracious and supportive fans, have rooted me on and encouraged me just when I’ve needed it most. I remember so many little exchanges that have kept me going. One of the first was at that very first Heidelberg Hall performance. It was Willie Nelson’s steel guitar player, Jimmy Day. He hollered from somewhere in the room “you’re gonna make it, baby!” I never forgot and never will.
Let’s now shift to the main focus of our interview, how are you using your success to bring goodness to the world? Can you share with us the meaningful or exciting social impact causes you are working on right now, including the inspiration behind your new single, “Good Trouble”?
As I’ve grown and gained so much experience in life, I find I have less bandwidth for the small stuff. Not when it comes to using my voice anyway. I feel very blessed to have a voice and to have been able to use it for (hopefully) good things, beautiful things. Increasingly, it’s a standard I want to stick to. Whatever is good and true and hopeful, I want to be a part of it where I can. I want to light things up, as long as I am here on earth, why not?
My new single, “Good Trouble” was born out of this very revealing season we are experiencing as a country and as a culture. It’s like we’ve been given a birds’ eye view of some extremely upsetting events, and it opens our eyes to some wounds that I, very naively, believed were close to healed. John Lewis’s passing and his eloquent words over the years really got my attention. I couldn’t get “Good Trouble” out of my head for a few months. Until it became a song.
Many of us have ideas, dreams, and passions, but never manifest it. But you did. Was there an “Aha Moment” that made you decide that you were actually going to step up and take action for this cause? What was that final trigger?
It’s like I mentioned before about the people along the way who’ve encouraged me. I don’t forget. And with events and heartbreaks that have been as informative as this year, i have turned to God many times with the question, “What can I do?’ And lots of, “Why am I here?” prayers too, if I’m being honest. I bob and weave with everyone else, but God reminds me to steady my gaze, keep my eyes toward what is eternal. That will always be love, for me. More love, the rest is not sustainable.
Can you tell us a story about a particular individual who was impacted or helped by your cause?
I pray there have been many, and that there will be more. Not for my benefit, but for all of us.
What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why. Share a story or an example for each.
Save money! Be a good business person and watch what is happening with your finances. It’s not very “artist-centric” behavior, but it will help you so much if you start making good financial habits early.
If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be?
I guess it would be food related. There shouldn’t be hunger these days when some have so much, yet unfortunately that is a worsening human crisis.
What is your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you explain how that was relevant in your life?
My mama said it a few years ago and I’ve already referenced it in this interview. “Keep your eyes on what is eternal” — this in response to so many of my phone calls about a variant of personal crisis. It made me frustrated and question — what does that mean? For me it’s love. Love is eternal, and sometimes love takes flight in a really good song.
Who is one person in the world whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why?
I always pause at this question, and think, “my dad!’ He passed away in 2007, only 59 years old. I miss him terribly. But if the question insists the person be living, then Willie Nelson! He is a hero of mine for sure. For every song he’s written and every note he’s sung. He’s a true gem.
Pre-Save “Good Trouble” here: https://orcd.co/bekmvvb
Thank you so much for these amazing insights. This was so inspiring, and we wish you continued success!