Music Spotlight Follow-up: Shaylen

Dec 08, 2023 at 01:21 pm by Bethany Bowman

When Music Spotlight Artist, Shaylen, relocated from LA to Nashville, she had high hopes but wasn’t fully sure what to expect.

She confessed, “The first month I was out here, I was scared to death. I cried every day. I was like, ‘What did I do?’ And then it took about a month. I adjusted. And then I've made such great friends. The community's been so welcoming.”

Even though her music career began on the pop side of music, with four acclaimed country singles released to date — “What If I Don’t,” “Roots,” “Do It Right The First Time” and “Closest Thing To Closure” — Shaylen has earned her keep in the country scene. Just after her debut country single “What If I Don’t” broke 10M streams on Spotify, the track was added to Spotify’s “Hot Country” Playlist, one of the platform's most popular playlists with over 7M followers including the top country hits of the week worldwide.

“I'm so glad that they've responded to it because it just feels like the most authentic that it's felt in my entire career. Even now, listening back to some of my pop music, I'm like, ‘Wow, that doesn't even sound like me.’ It always sounded like I was trying to figure out who that girl was. And now I just get to write things that are so just authentically me, and I've had the best freaking time doing it,” Shaylen stated.

As far as the songwriting process goes, Shaylen advised, “It's just been like so refreshing even to freaking be in the room with some of these people and be in a whole new way as far as the lyric side for me and figuring out the twist and the story. it's been so nice to just work with some of the best writers I've ever written with.”

She weaves a beautiful and moving tale of heartbreak in her latest single, “Cowboys Never Cry.” Lyrically, it is one of the finest songs I have heard in a while. She croons There it was in the rearview mirror/He broke wide open like the Tennessee River/ Face went even more red than my taillights/ Standing on the porch screaming "Come back baby"/ This F150 almost did a 180/ When I saw those tears falling from his eyes/ Where was this the whole time/ I thought cowboys never cry. If the words weren’t enough, Shaylen’s delivery of the song takes it to the next level.

Music Spotlight artist Spencer Crandall discovered her soon after she arrived and was blown away by her voice. When he added her vocals, he changed his song “To Be Continued…” from a good song to a great song.

Shaylen’s voice is on the edgier side of country music with a pop-rock vibe. One of the highlights of 2023 for her was when she teamed with Hinder’s Austin John Winkler for a remake of their mega-hit “Lips of An Angel.” Her manager was friends with one of the original producers, Brian Howes. They wanted to redo the song 18 years later with a female perspective and thought Shaylen would be a good person to demo what the song could be if Winkler teamed up with someone like Gabby Barrett or Carrie Underwood.

Once she laid down the locals, Winkler said, “I want you on it.” Shaylen was like “Wait, what? This is crazy.” It was a big role to take on, but she was honored. Once you hear their version of the song and watch the video, you know Winkler couldn’t have selected a better duet partner than Shaylen. Their chemistry is magical.

Having been with a label in the past, Shaylen is relishing her freedom as an independent artist.

She explained, “I go back to my team and I'm like, ‘This is what's coming out next.’ And nobody fights me on it. And I just have like sometimes I have like a gut feeling of like, ‘This has to come out next.’ And they're like, ‘Okay, cool.’”

Some may remember Shaylen from her early days in the hit teen show, The Wannabes, that featured the pop band, Savvy, and followed the lives of classical performing arts high school students who want to be pop stars.

But now, as an older and wiser artist, Shayen has embraced her country roots and come alive. (She was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee.) She focuses on making her heart happy. And now that she has done that, she is bringing us the best music of her career.

Now that Shaylen has settled in her new hometown of Nashville, people have taken notice as she has blossomed to become the best version of herself.

Be sure on the lookout for her next song, “Been There Before” which is out on January 5th.

You can follow Shaylen on her InstagramFacebookX(Twitter), TikTok, and all streaming services.

– – –

Bethany Bowman is a freelance entertainment writer. You can follow her blog, Instagram, Threads, and X (Twitter).