Finally I Found the Guitar and With It My Voice - Leah Martin Brown

Never, ever give up. There is room for everyone to succeed and a lane for everyone no matter what.

1. Tell us more about your background and journey. 

For me, everything started in my hometown of Gold Coast, Queensland. I have always loved to perform and play music and my family and community really allowed me to explore my craft as I was growing up. 

I spent a fair amount of my teenage years busking, playing in pubs and clubs, writing and recording music, and generally making a lot of noise. When I graduated High School at 17 I was accepted into the Queensland Conservatorium of Music where I studied a Bachelor of Popular Music. 

After this, I was a little lost. I knew I wanted to pursue a career in music as an original Artist but didn't know how I'd go about it. So I moved down to Melbourne, Victoria to continue studying (Masters of Music Teaching this time) and also to find myself. 

After 6 months, I realized that teaching wasn't quite for me and returned to the Gold Coast. In 2013, I received an email that would change my entire life. I was invited to Los Angeles, CA to perform a set at a conference called Musexpo. 

It was here that I formed my band Evol Walks (2014) and have been here living and working as a performer, vocalist, and songwriter for almost 7 years. 

2. When did you first decide you wanted to pursue music and how did you start? 

I don't really have an exact memory of when I decided to pursue music. It was something I have always wanted to do since I was very, very young. I started performing in musicals and drama performances and little dance recitals as young as 6 and when I was 7 I started learning to play the flute in the school band. 

I wasn't thrilled with the flute because I couldn't sing along with it. Finally, at 11- I found the guitar and with it, my voice. I played every spare moment, I covered songs from the radio, I wrote my own, and just generally messed around. 

After a year of sitting at home practicing, I started performing at my school for talent shows, in music class, provided music for liturgies (I went to Catholic school), and was also one of the guitar players for the band in our school's production of 'Footloose'. It spiraled from there. 

3. Who is your favorite artist and why? 

I don't know if I can name one Artist in particular who is my favorite. There are so many different people that have inspired me in different ways so it's hard to point to just one. 

Bon Scott from AC/DC is a huge inspiration, Stevie Nicks/Fleetwood Mac, Amy Lee from Evanescence. I love AFI. I love Janis Joplin and Jim Morrison. I could go on for days! 

4. Can you throw some light on opportunities one gets as a singer? 

As a vocalist, you definitely get a lot of different opportunities. You can be invited to sing for other projects, you can be a session vocalist and work with people in the studio on songs they've written and provided lead parts or backing vocals, you can also do what I did and start your own band. The possibilities are truly endless! 

5. Is formal training required or can one train themselves purely on the basis of talent? 

I think you can 100% be self-taught but when you get to a certain level I think it's important to seek advice and training from a professional coach. Not only will they make sure your technique is correct (super important as a vocalist because you can RUIN your instrument if you do not have correct vocal technique).

They will also show you new ways to use and connect with your instrument and even open you up to things you may not have thought of. You don't NEED formal training to start but it is important to have later on if you want to work in the industry and have longevity. 

6. What piece of advice would you like to give to future and aspiring artists? 

Never, ever give up. There is room for everyone to succeed and a lane for everyone no matter what. Make sure you work with purpose and be passionate. 

Connect with the Artistic community around you and support each other. Don't be an asshole. Be aware of who is a "yes" man, who is a negative influence, and trying to cut you down, and who is giving you genuine advice from a place of love. 

7. Which is your favorite book and why? 

This is almost an impossible question for me to answer. My second passion is reading. I have been an avid reader since I was a kid. I LOVE Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte. It is so beautifully written, it is dark and it is tragic. The perfect love story in my opinion. 

Currently reading 'The Witcher' series and loving it. Also, a huge fan of 'People Might Hear You' by Robin Klein and 'A Brave New World' by Aldous Huxley. 

Leah Martin - Brown

Musical Artist - vocalist, songwriter, and guitarist.

Interviewed By - Jyotsna Penumarti

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