In My Defense, is a collection of ten carefully crafted songs that give her fans an inside peek of how this girl chasing a dream for over fifteen years, has blossomed into the woman living those dreams.
Bri started her music career at 14 years of age, singing in her twin brothers’ band, juggling the late night gigs with early morning volleyball practice while in high school.
Eschewing volleyball scholarship offers, Bri opted for a chance to live in Austin, TX and attend the University of Texas. She finally got her chance to play live there after teaching herself guitar and playing with a friend.
Bri kept writing and eventually recorded an album and formed “The Banned”, which is a play on words from her song “Banned from Santa Fe”.
Bri is the artist who will say a prayer with you, then have a shot of whiskey with you with equal authenticity. A fixture on the Texas Country scene, Bri has seen her audience grow and diversify as she has progressed through the musical landscape.
As In My Defense kicks in, haunting, echoey guitars set a tone of where the listener is going to go. “Asphalt & Concrete,” the first song on the record, paints a picture of a desert girl cutting loose and losing a bit of herself in the big city. Bri soars vocally as she sings, “Well I’m into sunsets and I love the sand, but I wasn’t myself in a disrupted land, with buildings and people and too many drinks in my hand.” Bri is constantly flirting with the lyric as she tussles, barefoot on the streets of Austin.
“If you were a Cowboy” follows and is the slated as the first single releasing to radio and streaming outlets. A hard driving, sexy, mid-tempo tune with just enough attitude, it gives listeners a resume of what it takes to capture a confident, hard-working woman’s heart. Bri explains, “This is the only song on the record I didn’t write. It wasn’t my intention to cut outside of my craft, but my producer Rachel Loy played me the song, and I instantly looked at her with ‘I-have-to-have-this’ eyes.” As this female anthem drives, “if you had real dust on your boots, the kind that’s passed down from your roots, I bet i would fall for you, if you were a cowboy,” every woman feels the need for a strong, hard-working man, but she also has no time for anything inauthentic.
“I am so proud of the record we have created, no matter how cliche that sounds. I have put everything I have, and every dollar to my name creating this record for myself and my fans. I truly believe it is the best record I have ever released, and the pressure I felt to create something great pushed me to the max. I embraced it. I can’t wait for everyone to hear it.” With songs like “Cheat on Me,” (a co write with Courtney Patton), “Graffiti,” “Ring a Bell” (co write with Jody Booth), and “I Can’t Be Lonely,” each song takes on a autobiographical life of its own, but comes together in a cohesive image of the woman that sings them. “Rachel and I spent countless hours, concentrating and obsessing over every lyric, every melody... we tore apart and reconstructed anything necessary to make sure everything was exactly what the song truly needed. I think you can feel the work we put in when you listen to it.”
The CD’s last song, “Empty Chairs,” will strike a chord with her friends, peers, and mentors as a songwriter’s lament. Bri sheds light on the constant struggle that every touring musician battles: the rollercoaster of how live show attendance, record sales, and ticket counts are the benchmark of how performers are judged in this business, and the toll the size of the audience can take on their heart each night. It’s a song that lets the listener see inside of Bri’s dream, and how important each set of ears is to her. Naturally, doubt can enter one’s mind in any given situation; Bri shares how faith in her dream can at times be a struggle, despite her gratitude and obvious trust in the path God has chosen for her. She beautifully sings, “I’m grateful, but if they only knew, what’s behind three chords and the truth. They only get to see me at my best, but I’ve been cursed and I’ve been blessed, by the answer to my prayers. It’s hard to beat the thrill of a high, when I play a sold out night and feel like God has put me there. But Lord are you still with me, when i see Empty Chairs”. Simple, yet masterful in its message.