Paige Rose Pours Up Something Strong with “Whiskey Drinker”

Paige Rose has become one of my favorite performers and songwriters in Nashville. I am confident I first saw Rose perform at Nashville Tour Stop on a Sunday night at Belcourt Taps about three years ago. The singer-songwriter made quite the impression because I knew I would write this article someday. Since I have known Paige Rose, she has continued to improve her craft. However, what I love the most about Rose is her authenticity. She is who she is, and her music reflects her life experiences. Please keep reading to learn more about Paige Rose and her music. 

From Sioux City to Music City

Paige Rose began her journey to Nashville in Sioux City, Iowa. Like many others who move to Music City, Rose has been singing for as long as she remembers. The singer/songwriter said, “The second I could talk, I was singing. I am sure my parents have some incriminating videos of me singing “Man, I Feel Like a Woman” in my diapers at the top of my lungs. Then, I would force my cousin Chad to run sound for me. We had this little karaoke machine, and if anybody talked, I would start over.”

While Paige has been singing and writing for years, the desire to make it a career came in college. Rose said, “I didn’t get serious about music until I went to college up in Boston, where I was a vocal performance major. I never considered myself a songwriter until my last year in school. Then, on a visit to Nashville, I met Allen Shamblin. I don’t know if he knows this, but he shifted the trajectory of my life. He co-wrote “The House that Built Me,” which was recorded by Miranda Lambert. Allen shared this incredible story about the song, so I went back and changed my major to songwriting. I moved to Nashville about eight months later and have been running towards my dreams ever since, and I love it! I can’t do anything else for my life. So, there is no plan B for me.”

Paige Rose performs a song about her childhood home in Sioux City, Iowa

First Impressions of Nashville

Thousands visit Nashville every weekend are impressed by the musicians on Broadway, but they miss the original music played in other venues. Rose describes her first visit to Music City. The singer/songwriter said, “I was so enamored with the city. There was music everywhere, even in the shopping malls. So, I knew this was where I wanted to be, and I have since played that mall. Now that I have been here for four years, I have seen the majority of the city. So, trying to find the little things that have pieces of magic is a whole other experience. Every time you go to a writer’s round and hear a title, you think, I wish I had written that. There is so much magic around the city.”

Wondering what she is thinking about?

Paige Rose Discusses Lessons Learned in Nashville

The learning curve for songwriters who move to Nashville is tremendous, but for many who move here so young, you also experience personal growth. Rose said, “I have changed since coming to Nashville. I have half the hair I moved to town with for a start, but seriously, I have learned a lot in four years. Much of my learning results from being in my early twenties, as I moved here at the age of twenty-one. You learn a lot during those years, and indeed I have.”

It is vital to your success in town to find people you can depend on, and Paige Rose agreed. The singer/songwriter said, “I have learned to lean on the people you know you can trust. When I first moved to town, everyone said the word, network. But, unfortunately, I have always hated networking and am not very good at it. It’s not something I strive at, so if I am doing a panel discussion or mentorship, I tell people to make friends, not relationships. Your friends will carry you and hold you when you are successful and when you are falling apart. So, I think that is more important than a connection.”

The drive to succeed in Nashville is constant, and sometimes people can neglect themselves in the process. Paige Rose has learned the importance of taking care of yourself. Rose said, “It’s okay to take breaks. It’s okay to have a week to focus on your health and not have a write. When I first moved here, I had weeks when I was playing eleven shows a week. When I look back, that’s crazy. But, most importantly, I have learned there is no formula for success in this town. When you think you have it figured out, it changes.”

Paige Rose on stage at the Wildhorse Saloon
Paige Rose on stage at the Wildhorse Saloon

Paige Rose on Songwriting

While meeting Allen Shamblin changed her life, Paige Rose would blossom as a writer after moving to Nashville. The singer/songwriter said, “I have been writing songs since I started playing guitar, which was around eleven. But I didn’t think it was worth anything. Finally, however, my guitar teacher pushed me to play open mic nights and play my original songs. Looking back, that’s when the love of songwriting began. Everything I have written, I have lived. The more life I live, the more songs I am writing. It’s interesting to share those speckles of my life with people.”

Interestingly, Rose said, “The first song I felt I could build something around was “Whiskey Drinker.” I wrote it with my friend, Hera Lynn. We were both new to town, and this was our first right together. We were laughing about all the bad dates we had been on. Even though Hera was writing pop music at the time, she had this idea about “Whiskey Drinker.”

Paige Rose Found her Sound

Even though “Whiskey Drinker” is not Rose’s first release, it is a song that defines her sound. Finding your sound as an artist takes time, and over four years, Rose has done it. The singer/songwriter said, “When we finished writing “Whiskey Drinker,” I knew we had something. I knew this was a song I was going to build around. Anyone can write five songs, but as an artist to choose five or six songs that represent them, that’s challenging.”

Many artists rush to put music out when they come to town. They feel pressure to have music out, but sometimes, their sound changes after being in Nashville for a while. Rose said, “It takes a long time to figure out how you want to sound and what you want to say. It sounds backward to say that because it’s country music, and many would say it’s all the same. However, much of my music has rock elements because I listened to music like Queen, Alanis Morrisette, and Fleetwood Mac. But, I also listened to Shania Twain and Miranda Lambert. So, that is what I wanted my hybrid to sound like. It takes trial and error to find your sound.”

Paige Rose and "Whiskey Drinker" cover art
Listen to “Whiskey Drinker” on Apple Music or Spotify

Paige Releases “Whiskey Drinker”

For those who know Paige Rose and have seen her play, you have been waiting to add “Whiskey Drinker” to your playlists. Thankfully, that day happened on November 5, 2021. A song full of energy and sass, but completely Paige Rose. The singer/songwriter said, “When Hera Lynn and I wrote this song, it was our first write together. We spent a lot of time talking about other things. For us to have gotten the song we did is incredible. People gravitated toward “Whiskey Drinker” when I began playing it out. Who knew this date I had not thought about in two years would spark this thing that has been such an instrumental part of my life.”

“Whiskey Drinker” was produced by Sam Haiman, and it seems he was able to capture Rose’s vision. So even though the release was delayed, it was worth the wait. Rose said, With every delay, it worked out in my favor. We could get some players we wouldn’t have otherwise been able to since they were not on the road. I told my producer I wanted to sound like Shania Twain, Brothers Osborne, and a little bit of Maren, and Miranda all had a baby. So we broke it all down, and Sam Haiman took every irrational thought in my head and made “Whiskey Drinker” something beautiful.”

Listen to “Whiskey Drinker” here!

Fun Facts with Paige Rose

When Paige Rose is not making music, you might find her creating something in the kitchen. Rose said, “I love to cook, and I am a pretty decent cook. My dad ran restaurants for most of his life and mine. So, I have a love of being in the kitchen. But, honestly, I wanted to be like Emeril Lagasse because he found a way to make food and music all one thing. Also, I was a competitive swimmer for about twelve years. Initially, I thought I would do musical theatre. If I didn’t love songwriting so much, I probably would still do musical theatre.”

Since Paige loves cooking, I suggested having a bar on Broadway if she makes it big. The singer/songwriter said, “There are a lot of things I would do with that bar on Broadway. I love that Miranda Lambert’s bar only sells tallboys. My bar would sell koozies for those tallboys. If you know me, you know I am never without a koozie. My bar would also serve popcorn—free popcorn for everybody.”

My Thoughts

Paige Rose prides herself on her authenticity, which is appreciated. Her songs are always something she has experienced. For example, she released her song, “Just a House,” after her parents sold her childhood home. Likewise, “Whiskey Drinker” was inspired by a date who didn’t like that Paige was drinking whiskey. As Paige says, “But that’s me.”  

I believe the future is bright for Paige Rose. Her music is fun but can also hit you in your feels. She is a gifted vocalist, songwriter, and performer. So if you see Paige Rose is coming to a town near you, don’t miss her! Undiscovered Nashville is looking forward to what Paige Rose has in store for us in 2022, but in the meantime, we will jam out to “Whiskey Drinker” and catch her performing live any chance we get.

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