Q&A with Brei Carter


With CMA Fest right around the corner - the first in two years - Nashville is expecting one of the biggest crowds it has ever had for the summertime festival. In the thick of all the different activities and performances going on, we believe that it’s the artists who’ve emerged over the past two years that are making their CMA Fest debut who will really see a bump in support going forward. Artists like Brei Carter! Brei has broken out over the past year on the back of solid songs such as “Gave Him a Girl,” “Paybacks,” and an incredible cover of Charley Pride’s “Kiss An Angel Good Morning.” We recently had the awesome opportunity to check in with Brei and talk all about CMA Fest, “Paybacks,” Charley Pride and her classic country influences, how she wants to encourage and empower people through her music, the ways that her experience in the US military prepared her most for the music business, and so much more!

(Interview by: Jeffrey Kurtis/photo by: Heather Carpenter

MUSIC VIDEO: "Gave Him a Girl"

LYRIC VIDEO: "Paybacks"



1) CMA Fest 2022 is just around the corner, and you’ll be making your debut at it this year. What are you most looking forward to with being a part of it?

With CMA Fest coming up so fast my mind is just racing, and I’m bursting with excitement. This is my debut and I really feel blessed. I’m most excited about all the new people I will get to meet, and the love that is shared among the country music family, and sharing my gift with the world. I honestly still can’t believe that it’s happening.

2) CMA Fest has been absent due to the pandemic over the past couple years. Although devastating for the music industry, in what positive ways do you feel that it being absent allowed you to really define yourself and music so that when you hit the stage during it, you’ve already been able to become more established so that the performance will have that much more of an impact?

With the pandemic and all the isolation and separation happening, it’s allowed me to just hunker down and make some decisions about my music career and where I want to go with it. It’s allowed me to be specific and to make sure I’m empowering people and encouraging people. It’s allowed me to have more confidence in who I am as a person and as an artist. I want to really make a difference with my music.

3) You’ll be playing an acoustic set on the CMA Spotlight Stage inside Fan Fair X on Saturday June 11 (3:30 PM CST slot). With so much activity going on at CMA Fest, what is the #1 reason that you feel the fans need to make sure your performance is on their to-do list?

With so much talent out there, and with CMA Fest being about music, education, and empowerment, I feel my fans should not miss my performance. Although I am a new and emerging artist that’s just getting her feet wet, I want my fans to come and be a part of my journey and grow with me. Plus, my music makes you feel good, inspired, and there’s a message that I don’t want my fans to miss. Come share it with me!

4) By playing inside Fan Fair X, you have a unique opportunity to reach fans that aren’t as distracted by all the hoopla from all the different stages outside under the neon lights of Lower Broadway. In what ways do you think this will help you not only gather people to the stage, but to keep them invested in your music while earning new fans?

Well for one, it’s going to be super hot out and I will have a few giveaways that day. People can also be a part of something new. In life everyone wants to hit it big and be a part of the next big thing. I’m asking the fans to come out and be a part of something bigger than them. The bigger is the inspiration, the celebration, the love that we all need and crave. By seeing me, the fans can see and be a part of that, and a part of me.

5) After your performance, you’ll be heading over to the Delta Airlines booth for a guest appearance. What are you most looking forward to with being able to meet the fans one on one in that setting?

I am probably most excited about all the hugs and the love and just meeting so many great people. I am so grateful to Delta Airlines for hosting me. They’ll be officially announcing my meet/greet time soon, along with all the other great artists they’ll be hosting.

6) Switching over to your most recent single, “Paybacks.” Can you tell us a little bit about the song and why you feel that it’s resonating so much with listeners?

Paybacks are real life! Although we think it’s simple, it’s not. We have all made mistakes, but people need to take inventory of how they treat others because Karma is real. No one wants to be on the other side of a payback.

7) Another cool song release from earlier this year, came when you did a cover of Charley Pride’s “Kiss an Angel Good Mornin’.” Your version earned a ton of media praise and incredible buzz for being authentic while honoring the song and artist. What does that song mean to you personally?

“Kiss An Angel Good Mornin’” means everything to me! Not only am I a huge fan of Mister Charley Pride, but my dad used to sing this song to me when I was a child. Unfortunately, neither my father, nor Charley were able to hear me sing it, so I just wanted to pay homage to both of them because I had great respect for them. I know they can ‘hear’ me now!

8) You do list Charley Pride as one of your influences…along with Loretta Lynn, Aretha Franklin, and more! In what ways do you feel you incorporate all those influences into your music while still finding your own unique sound right down the middle of them?

Because all these great artists influenced me with their unique sound and message growing up as a little girl, over the years, I’ve learned to keep a part of them with me and to find my own voice within their music, and to express that voice through my own musical interpretations. I am not trying to be like them, rather just trying to carry on and pass down their musical legacies and messages in some meaningful way.

9) We can’t let this Q&A go by without thanking you for your service in our US Military. Thank you! On that subject, in what ways do you feel the structure and discipline you learned in the military has helped you in the music business ? 

Thank you! I feel that the military helped really instill discipline and just a greater sense of pride of what I am putting out there. What I learned is that when the tough gets going, you have to hang in there and keep going. You don’t quit, you don’t give up. You may sometimes lose the battle, but you will win the war if you continue with gut, fearlessness, determination, and heart.

10) What is the best piece of advice that you can offer an aspiring songwriter/artist just trying to break into the music business?

I would tell anyone looking to get into the industry to get ready for the ride of a lifetime, with no guarantees. There will be highs and lows. You can make it and absolutely NEVER give up on your dreams and ALWAYS believe in yourself no matter what. The only person that can stop you, is YOU!


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