Introducing Rachel Beauregard of Nashville’s pop-country band, Native Run. From the moment Native Run first began performing within the intimate settings of friends’ and families’ living rooms in housewarming gigs, I knew in my heart and soul that Rachel and band mate Bryan Dawley had something truly sparkling special to offer to the world that would quickly grow into something unmistakably tremendous. Rachel’s talents are immense and extraordinary to say the very least. In 2010, I’ve had the honor and sheer joy of sharing the stage with her when we performed together in Forum Theatre’s, Scorched. Rachel has graced so many stages within the DC theatre community with her diversity as a theatre artist before hitting the road and touring nationwide as a pop-country artist. With an all-around talent and a matching vivacious personality, Rachel is truly pop-country’s fresh, up and coming IT lady.
Rachel, you and Bryan have this pure chemistry onstage that is beyond rare and unique to find within a dynamic duo such as yours in the music industry. I understand that you both have a deep friendship that goes somewhat way back. How did you both meet? How has your friendship grown over the years in ways that impacts your relationship both on and off stage? When you both are on tour, and off stage, what are some ways you like to spend your downtime?
Bryan and I met over 5 years ago, after college, through mutual friends. We started playing on the worship team at our church, where all of our friends in the DC/VA area went pretty much, and realized we had a very special vocal dynamic harmonies that blended and we just clicked musically. We started writing out of a coffee shop/venue/music school in the NOVA area, eventually began touring, got a residency in NYC, made our way to Nashville, and have lived there since 2012.
Over the years, we’ve experienced the gamut of a solid friendship. We actually dated for a few months, realized THAT was not our connection, becoming solely devoted to our music and friendship, we have established a solid respect and admiration for each other that we both appreciate so much. It’s crucial for ANY collaboration. We love hanging out on and off the road. We go on double dates with our significant others; hang out at a few local bars playing darts and Hoop Fever…it’s a fun time. That being said, there are several arguments, misunderstandings, huge drag-out knock down fights that have gotten us here:)
I hear that you developed your love and inspiration for singing when you first began singing in Church choirs. Is this how you got your start? How has spirituality influenced your style as an artist? Did you always know you wanted to be a lead singer in a pop-country band?
I have been singing in church for as long as I can remember. My mama was always in the church choir “making a joyful noise, not a beautiful noise” as she said. (She’s NOT a singer;). I remember getting a lot of solos as a kid, and just thinking, “Oh I guess I am a singer,” but I didn’t actually want to be a professional singer until I was an adult. I played basketball, loved marine biology, grew up with really smart boys in my family – so I tried to copy what they did. Church/Worship music was my way of agreeing with God that he gifted me with those heavenly genes, and so I did that all growing up through college – then I met Bryan, and we realized God had bigger plans than we could ask for or imagine!
I also hear that Patsy Cline is one of your major musical influences growing up. I’d love to hear more about your love and passion for artists and musical genres that helped you grow into the artist you have become today.
Patsy is a Virginia girl, too and an alto. So, I immediately connected with her tone, songs, and pure fiery spirit that are so evident in how she performs. She’s my grandmother’s favorite artist, and I’ve sung it at several of her birthdays and other events per her request. Bryan and I listened to EVERYTHING growing up: Beatles to Alanis Morrisette to Nirvana to Neil Diamond to TLC to southern gospel to bluegrass…we’re influenced by many things:)
Dreams…I’d love to hear more about your lifetime goals, dreams, hopes and aspirations….anything that comes from Rachel.
Real talk- I want to earn a Grammy. I am a HUGE believer in “what you think about you bring about” as my mother told me countless times growing up. I have seen the effects of huge dreams + hard work becoming miracles and so I’m not afraid to dream HUGE. I also am incredibly grateful for where I am, and if our career ended for any reason, I would still consider it a dream come true. Dreams change and morph all the time from necessity or just sheer will, but regardless it’s important to always have a dream. Right now, my dream is to earn a (several;) Grammy.
How did Native Run become Native Run? How did the band first come together? I remember when you guys were first Deep River…how has the band grown into the dynamic group it is today?
We began in Virginia as a trio, working with Luke Brindley (of the Brindley Brothers and Jammin Java). Deep River was a great time in learning how we create, collaborate, tour, work 3 jobs at once, etc. Eventually, the trio scenario didn’t work out for many reasons, but we so appreciate everything that grew from that time. Bryan and I needed to live and write full-time in Nashville, began writing our album that is due out early 2015, and started honing in on what is it that we do special. We always tried to find unique ways to fit into the country format without being a direct copy or derivative. That takes LOTS of writing, playing, live shows, WORK.
About 2 years into Deep River, we were asked to change our name from ANOTHER Deep River that owned the federal trademark. Can’t really argue with that. So we reached out to fans and asked them if they would send us words that they thought described us. It’s really hard to name a band, and then name it AGAIN!! But someone sent us the word “Native: unique, original, from the source,” and since that’s what we want to be, we kept it. And threw on an action verb because we are pretty high energy.
I think both you and Bryan write lyrics that anyone and pretty much everyone can relate to. When you both are in the writing groove, how do the lyrics develop? Do you like to write together as a team? Do you ever have moments where the lyrics are improvised and simply flow together when making that connection?
We always write together. As a duo, as a female/male duo, there’s a LOT to say. We always want to be a part of the songs we perform live, because that’s what makes for the most genuine performance. Usually, one of us will come with a title, musical hook, concept, and honestly we just talk it out for however long we need to until it starts flowing. Sometimes it takes 2 hours and sometimes it takes 2 weeks. If there’s a good song in there, it’ll come out:) Otherwise, you learn quickly to not be precious and cut your darlings.
I’d love to hear about the most exciting/ invigorating/ memorable performance you’ve given thus far and what made it so special for you.
Opening for Lady Antebellum this summer, and debuting on the Opry stage. Both made me feel quite nervous and undoubtedly excited. We considered those honors the biggest and most rewarding milestone yet. I don’t even remember debuting on the Opry stage I think I just blacked out. Haha!
I understand that friends and family are very sacred to both you and Bryan. I’d love to hear more about those who have helped you become who you are today as individuals and artists.
Our families are EVERYTHING. Both of our parents are so supportive, gracious, encouraging, and prayer warriors. Praying parents, man they get the real business done. I’ve had family members support me financially on the several occasions I couldn’t pay rent. Without them, I wouldn’t have had life insurance or gas in my car. They have made this happen.
Our entire team works tirelessly to get Native Run running. From our management to our publishers to our label to our attorney, there is SO much effort, money, time, and so little sleep that goes into growing a band. We have to thank them for everything because I wouldn’t be writing this on a tour bus cruising down the Michigan highway to our show tonight without them.
Our friends keep us sane. They remind us who we are when we’ve lost ourselves somewhere on the highway. They keep us grounded and positive. They are patient with us when we can’t be good friends because we’re gone a lot. AND NOW I’M CRYING…..
Who were your heroes growing up?
My heroes were/are my mom, Kirk. She’s the strongest woman I’ve met. She is fearless, has more energy than a cheetah, is an incredibly accomplished and smart businesswoman, and is in DAMN great shape for a 61 year-old. She raised my brother and me as a single mom for a long time. I’ll never take that for granted. My grandmother (her mom) is also my huge inspiration. She has been “the first female to…” for more things than I can count. She’s also the best cook, and I thank her for having great legs;)
Favorite hobbies? Favorite pastime games? Favorite color??
I LOVE hot yoga. It really is essential for me. I have had a small (huge) obsession with sharks since I was able to read. I love the color green and green things. I love being outside anywhere.