We had the good fortune of connecting with Melissa Bollea Rowe and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Melissa, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I knew that if I started my own company I could determine my own path, my own worth, my own story and I would always have a place in the music business because I created one. I knew that being a Songwriter was who I am, what I live and breath effortlessly. I knew that for all of my life, music would be what I was made to do. I knew that it wouldn’t be easy but I would learn, I would grow, I would be able to help others and it would be worth it. And so I did and so it is.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Music saved my life. When I was a child I lost both my parents tragically. Music was a natural place for me. It moved in me in ways that healed my heart and soul. I could hear lyric and melody effortlessly, it seemed to stream down through me as if I were a conduit. I always felt it chose me and I am so grateful for that. I taught myself to play guitar and piano. and while there are many, much more skilled than I am, I feel grateful for the gift that I was given and I’m proud of that. Every part of my career story has been organic. When I moved to Nashville, I had no idea how the industry worked. I got a job, I learned, I wrote hundreds of songs, attended lots of workshops and played endless writers nights. I grew and I grew my skill and my connections until timing, preparation and opportunities kept showing up. I’ve now written with hundreds of artists and professional songwriters and I have watched those songs take on a lives of their own. It would be hard to chose a favorite cut or experience but let me tell you about the day I wrote with the legendary Bonnie Tyler (80’s sensation and grammy nominated artist of hits like -Total Eclipse Of The Heart, It’s A Heartache, and many more) I was working with a dear friend he goes by the name of “Spoon” in the industry. Spoon alway believed in me and in my songwriting. One day he called me up and asked me if I would like to write with Bonnie Tyler and naturally I was like “Heck yeah” well long story short is -as we sat in the writing room, I couldn’t help but think back to a very delicate time in my life as a child when her song “Total Eclipse Of The Heart” was all over radio and how effected I was by it. I would literally lay in my bed as a little girl missing my mother and cry listening to that song. I didn’t really know what it meant I just knew what I felt when hearing it and it helped me move through some terrible heartache. Years and years later to be sitting in a room with a voice I knew all too well was absolutely surreal and beautiful. I sense became friends with Bonnie and have never taken for granted how magical the experience was. I owe that to Spoon. Along the way there have been a hundred more magical stories that bring me to tears just thinking of them even something like playing the world famous Bluebird Cafe for the first time and every time since, still and always will be moments I cherish. I could just go on and on…
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Nashville, Tennessee is such a cool city and like many cities it keeps growing! I would definitely want to take them to legendary places like the Ryman, The Grand Old Opry or the Bluebird Cafe. I would also give the a glimpse of what “Broadway” looks like because it too has many neat things to experience like The Country Music Hall Of Fame and The Nashville Symphony and more. Nashville has many hidden gems just outside of town too like “Leipers Fork” a quaint little town with unique shops like “David Arms” and beautiful landscapes. Or the historic Franklin Theatre in Franklin, Tennessee. I would probably encourage anyone visiting to come during the Fall. Fall in Tennessee is breathtaking! It’s hard to pick a favorite restaurant but I would certainly take my friends to “The listening Room Cafe” for a meal and song great music. You can find hit songwriters on any given day playing songs you hear on the radio at The Listening Room Cafe and it’s a larger venue so you can typically get a reservation. Oh, wait, a must have breakfast would be “The Loveless Cafe.” Yes the biscuits there are a story of their own and I’ll let you read up about that!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Bob and Mary Goodman are two of the most beautiful people on the planet. Though Mary has passed away her spirit is with me always. This beautiful couple loved me as their own and considered me an honorary child of theirs for many years loving, supporting and encouraging me to chase my dreams. They taught me what it means to give and how powerful it is when you do. My parents passed away when I was very young and these two came along much later in my life, but no less are and will always be, a driving force behind my success big or small.
Other: Melissa Bollea Rowe on Clubhouse app www.melissabollearowe.com