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Indie Talk

  • Writer's pictureIndie Music News Reporter

Jailbird to Songbird: Briana Calhoun Shares Her Incredible Story and the Message Behind Her Music

Briana Calhoun's Heartfelt EP Title Track "Learn Girl" is About Learning to Love Yourself From the Inside.

(Calhoun, Louisiana)

Briana Calhoun is a singer/songwriter from Louisiana with an eclectic style and an incredible story. She's gone from jailbird to songbird, and now she offers music to empower others. During her teens and early twenties, Briana went through difficult times and fell victim to addiction, depression, and self-hatred. She wound up doing time in state prison for multiple possession charges.

Calhoun was able to turn her life around. Today, she has a Master's degree, a successful career, and a beautiful family. In addition to her career and family, Briana is an accomplished singer, songwriter and recording artist. Currently, she has three songs released in advance of her EP including "Learn Girl", "Hang Up", and "Whiskey."

Briana wrote "Learn Girl" (the title track to the EP) as a call to love yourself. "Learn Girl" explores finding positive messages to replace negative thoughts when shame or regret arises from a bad decision or behavior.

"I was lying in bed one night, feeling more disappointed than I should have been over a bad decision I'd made and started singing this little melody to chastise myself; "When ya gonna learn girl..."But I suddenly realized that I was doing the very thing I always tell my high school students, especially my girls, not to do: self-hate."

The song "Hang Up" has also been released. "Hang Up" is based on the human tendency to exceed moderation. Struggle is at the heart of this song. There are obvious struggles like drugs and alcohol, but there are also struggles that are less apparent. These obstacles may cross a line and become problematic for some people. Even if it's not considered disreputable by societal standards, addictions or harmful behaviors with food, fitness, or even sex can be disruptive and hurtful. The song's message is clear: hang up your bad habits, because they'll drag you down.

Being an addict myself, I'll be the first to admit this song was written for me, too. Just because I'm not on drugs doesn't mean I don't still struggle with moderation. So, it's not a judgement -- it's a reminder."

Not all of Briana's songs are positive. As a versatile writer, her songs explore many emotions and experiences. "Whiskey" is a coming of age song about drinking too much and ruining a good relationship because of it.

"It's hard for me to sing because it's so candid -- It makes me feel like I'm naked in front of everyone. But, people really seem to like it, so I just bare down and play it anyway."

Aside from her faith, songwriting has always been a way for Briana Calhoun to get outside of her situation and comfort herself. In a way, songwriting is like therapy. She wants her music to have the same effect on those facing similar struggles. Her faith, self-love, and determination put her on a positive path.

"My music is for everyone. It defers from the norms of both Country and Pop, and is somewhere between mainstream and Americana. I like to call it "Southern Pop."

For more information and links to social media, discography, and more, please visit Briana Calhoun's website.

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Listen on Spotify.

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