Sheyna Gee was a pleasant surprise as I walked into Live Oak for a writer’s night. It was my first time hearing her sing. Her style, lyrics, and vocals with slight rasp pulled me into the performance. Immediately, I wanted to know more about her and her music. It was regretful I was just discovering Sheyna since she has been in Nashville for five years. Now, if I see Sheyna’s name on a line-up, I will try to make it to the show. Undiscovered Nashville is proud to share Sheyna’s story with our readers. Please keep reading to learn more about Sheyna Gee and her music.
A Childhood Filled with Music
Sheyna Gee, much like many aspiring artists, began their musical journey at a young age. However, Sheyna had a short stint playing softball before moving on to music. Gee said, “My mom told my siblings and me we had to have a hobby. My first choice was softball, but I hit the ball and ran to get the ball. Sports were not it for me. My brother was seven years older than me, and he played the drums and piano. He had a guitar lying around, and my mom found someone who would give me lessons at five years old. I took guitar lessons for a few years. At about seven, I started writing songs. Of course, they were not good. They were just these dumb songs kids make up.”
Sheyna Gee has a more traditional country sound, but it didn’t start that way. Also, when you see Sheyna, you might think she is more of a rocker. You would’ve been right. The singer-songwriter said, “I didn’t think I was a singer until I was older. When I was about ten years old, we started a band called “Spoiled.” In high school, I played in a pop-rock band. However, that didn’t work out because clearly, the songs I was writing were country songs. I love rock, but I cannot seem to write upbeat music, and I still can’t! I write the saddest songs in the world. At twenty, I started my first country band, and I have played country music ever since.”
From Los Angeles to Nashville
Sheyna grew up in Los Angeles, but five years ago, she moved to the Music City. I was curious about what made it the right time to leave LA. The singer-songwriter said, “I began making trips to Nashville since I was eighteen. Eventually, it got to the point I needed to move here. I was playing more original shows than covers, and I had gotten to be a big fish in a little pond kind of thing. I was playing Stagecoach Festivals and opening for big artists. However, I felt like I had done all I could do in Los Angeles. Plus, I wanted to be a songwriter, and all the publishing companies are in Nashville. I would come to Nashville and make a relationship, but I would leave for three months. When I would come back, it felt like I was starting over. I wasn’t growing in either market, so it was time to move.”
The Challenges of Being New in Nashville
When you have built a following in a different market, moving to Nashville can be challenging. You have to rebuild from the ground up. Gee said, “Since LA was home, I had built relationships since I was a kid. I was playing significant shows out there. When I was thirteen, I opened for Elton John, and at seventeen, I opened for Stevie Wonder. After I switched from pop to country, I was able to open for Easton Corbin and David Nail.”
Every artist has their struggles breaking into the music scene in Nashville. Sheyna talked about what has been her most significant challenges. The singer-songwriter said, “The most overwhelming thing to me is trying to connect within the industry. Leaving the connections in LA to move to Nashville, it has been the relationships with radio and publishers that are difficult to establish. Playing live has not been a problem. Fortunately, I am starting to build some relationships and playing different showcases. It feels like I am beginning again like I just moved here.”
Sheyna Gee and The Nashville Experience
Sheyna Gee is rediscovering herself as an artist and reintroducing herself to the songwriting community in Nashville. Gee discussed her time in Music City. The singer-songwriter said, “When I got to Nashville, I took it seriously for six months. I accomplished all my goals, but I didn’t set any new ones. Then I got sucked into the world of cover bands on Broadway and playing weddings. It was like I blinked, and it had been four years already. At the beginning of 2020, I went into the studio to record because I had a budget. I recorded an EP last February, and then the world shut down in March. I never got to take the release stuff seriously.”
Some call Broadway the 10-year trap. You come to town to be a songwriter, but you can lose your focus. Gee talked about how easy it is to get caught downtown. Sheyna said, “You are playing full-time and making money, but you are still playing music. However, you are playing covers. I’ve built a fan base, and many never would hear my original music if they had not seen me playing on Broadway. But, I didn’t focus on my writing. I’ve written more songs in the last year than I wrote the past five years combined. I wouldn’t call it a waste of time, but a transfer of energy.”
Sheyna Gee Releases her latest single, “Anymore”
Sheyna Gee released her latest single, “Anymore,” on April 2nd. “Anymore” is the first release for the Los Angeles native since 2019. Fortunately, we will not have to wait another two years for more music from Sheyna. Gee is planning to release three more songs this year. Sheyna wrote “Anymore” with Breann Young and co-produced the song with Chris Hurst. “Anymore” is an easily relatable song for many, especially those who hold on to things that once held meaning.
The singer-songwriter talked with us about the inspiration for the song. Gee said, “Breann and I were talking about how you have a drawer full of pictures or a bag in your closet of things like a shirt someone used to wear. You don’t want them, and you are not doing anything with them. But, you keep it. I am the type of person who will respond to an ex-boyfriend, even if they screwed me over. We talked for about two hours, and when we started to write, we finished the song in forty-five minutes.”
Fun Facts with Sheyna Gee
If you see Sheyna Gee, her style stands out. Gee said, “I have a lot of tattoos, but I only have tattoos on the on half of my body. I like to make everyone happy. The right side of my body is for people, like my grandma, who don’t like tattoos. The left side of my body is for people who like tattoos.” There is more to Sheyna Gee than meets the eye. You might think she is tough, but according to Sheyna, she is “the least confrontational person you will ever meet.” The singer-songwriter is also an animal lover. Gee said, “I rode horses all my life and barrel raced. When my mom got a divorce, she got horses. I am also a big dog person, all the dogs we had rescued. I have a fifteen-year-old Chihuahua named Root Beer, who was a stray that found me twelve years ago.”
As a music fan, I am grateful to have discovered Sheyna Gee and her music. She is a terrific performer who loves to make the audience happy. You can tell Sheyna is in her happy place when she is on stage, and she projects that energy onto the audience. If you have not listened to Sheyna’s new single, check it out on Apple Music or Spotify. Follow Sheyna on social media to keep up with where she is performing and when new music is coming.