Starlight - The White Wall Sessions
As Cold As You - The White Wall Sessions
Empty Vases - Tiny Desk Contest
THIS IS ME
Rochelle Riser, a Nashville-based singer/songwriter, has been compared to prolific women in their craft such as Stevie Nicks, Norah Jones, and Alison Krauss. With clear, songbird vocals, Riser’s music is a refreshing combination of organic sounds and heart-tugging melodies. Her singles "Way Out There," written about the feeling of coming back home after you've grown, and "Superior," an ode to summers spent along the Minnesota North Shore, are available now. You can also hear her voice on the motion picture soundtrack (composed by Belgian band Puggy) of the Netflix original film Bigfoot Family.
Born and raised on a farm in rural Sibley, Iowa, Riser by no means comes from a family of artists, "just farmers and working class people that could carry their part in the hymnal," she says. She grew up listening to songwriting aficionados like Carole King and Paul Simon and found her voice singing in choir. She moved to Nashville at 18 to study music and psychology, but it wasn’t until a few years later she began to take her songwriting seriously.
"That summer, I went through a really intense period of growth and growing up. I felt my very small world just bust wide open,” she recalls. “Suddenly, I had a lot to say. I had been writing songs here and there for years, but all of the sudden the songs just kept coming. I was hooked.” In Nashville, Riser began to pick up influences from songwriting legends like Emmylou Harris, Gillian Welch and Willie Nelson, who inspired her with their vocal-centric tales of love and loss. “It’s all about the feeling for me,” she says. “And I find I can write so much easier than I can talk. A great song pulls you into the author’s emotion so you feel exactly what they’re going through. That’s what I try to do in my songs.”
Called “the real deal” and a “voice … spanning the gap between ethereal heights and down-to-earth intimacy,” Rochelle Riser released her debut EP What Was On My Mind under her given name, Rochelle Feldkamp. Since then, she has put in a lot of hours honing her craft, writing more than a hundred songs while gaining some Nashville confidence. “I discovered that writing songs in your bedroom only gets you so far,” she jokes. “And there’s so much talent in Nashville that I could just go out every night and listen to what everyone else is doing. I’ve had to learn how to balance those two parts of me and start valuing what I bring to the table. Now it’s time to go out and share that.”
Photo By: Harazim Photography
Photo By: Libby Danforth