For Stephanie Quayle, impatience is a virtue.
Her new album, Love the Way You See Me, was supposed to arrive on Sept. 8. But when it was done, she just couldn’t wait to let her fans hear it. So she released the album a week early, on Friday (Sept. 1).
“I’m patiently impatient,” Quayle told me when she called while she was home in Bozeman, Montana.
“My fans have been hearing the music at all our shows for two years. So I was like, ’Is there any chance we can just get it to the people?’ The label team rallied, and we were able to pull it off. I wanted to give it to them before the holiday weekend and just say, ’Here’s your soundtrack. Go. Let it make your hearts happy.'”
“Seeing the response has been the best. People are picking out their favorite songs, they’re Snapchatting and Instagraming, they’re posting pictures of their kids listening. It’s cool to see how the music is resonating with everyone. I’ve been smiling all day.”
When Quayle first realized that singing was what made the most sense for her, she was an American teenager in Switzerland. She’d moved there as part of an exchange program for her entire junior year of high school, and her host family encouraged her to speak French while she was there.
“I’d been singing since I was a kid, from the choirs to barns to backyards. But I didn’t think that that could be my life. But when I heard this band sitting at a Swiss café, talking about needing a lead singer, I said in my broken French, ’I sing,'” she recalled.
She started writing songs while she was in the Swiss band and had the chance to explore that side of her creativity. But it wasn’t until she moved to Nashville years later to pursue singing and songwriting that she was able to hone that craft.
“I’m such a better listener or collaborator and writer now,” she said.
Switzerland was a major turning point for her, she said, because once she was onstage fronting that band, there was no question that’s where she belonged.
“It was a must. There can’t be anything else. When you’re figuring it out and hustling, you can get sidetracked,” she said. “But then just like that, like being onstage in Switzerland, and you realize, ’Yep. I’m exactly where I need to be.'”
The brand new album is what Quayle calls a blend of songs that she fell in love with and songs that she poured her guts into. But no matter who gets the songwriting credits on a song, Quayle loves the ones that make you pull over to the side of road.
“The ones that you just have to stop and really listen. And you can’t stop listening to them,” she said. “There are a lot of layers to songs like that. You’re like, ’How are these my words and yet I didn’t write this?'”
Enjoy the video for “Winnebago,” her current single written by Victoria Banks, Phil Barton, Emily Shackelton and Lindsay Rimes.