Country Music Explosion:Thanks for doing this interview,Let's first start off by giving us a little background of your life,then we can proceed to the rest of the interview

Nikki Briar:I was born and raised in NJ,I'm also a proud Army wife, married to my number one fan and inspiration.I graduated from Seton Hall University with a degree in Music and Education and a master’s in Education and Child Psychology.I was an elementary school teacher and special ed teacher for 5 years and an afterschool music teacher for children wanting to learn guitar and vocals.I was involved with music since I could talk and according to my parents and childhood videos,I learned how to talk through music and learning lyrics to songs as a baby.Music was part of my life,like a family member.Both of my parents were musicians,my uncle and my brother as well.I was always a lover all of genres of music and was a fan of country music at age 13 with artists like Shania Twain and Leanne Rimes.I always love being on stage from talent shows to musicals and theater appearances,acting and dancing as well.I went to a gifted and talented highschool and continued to grow and develop musically.The opportunity to pursue my own career as a country artist came when I my husband and I at the time were newly engaged and I was singing the national anthem for one of his military events.A fellow soldier and friend approached about collobrating with his friend in Nashville and although I was finishing up college and my degree,I was songwriting and actively performing and decided to try out a new adventure.The first song I cowrote entitled A SOLDIER’S PRINCESS dedicated to my now husband became popular and was picked up on various radio and internet radio stations…soon after that, my new path in life would begin.With 3 albums out and my 4th releasing in about a month,I left teaching 2 years ago and decided to follow this path that God has led me down.I miss my classroom,students and fellow coworkers but am blessed to see them at concerts and performances and to give back to my community and other communities by performing at schools,benefits,fundraisers and various events helping animals and people in need.
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Country Music Explosion:When did you start writing about music—and what or who were your early passions and influences?

Nikki Briar:I was an active poetry writer and even had some poetry published at my college literary magazine a few times.I loved writing and soon after that passion grew,I felt confident putting my own melody to the words I had written and those words into a song.It was all trial and error but a fun, artistic form of expression. I numbered all of my poems and once they reached well into the hundreds,I knew there was something else there.During that time I was a huge fan of Jewel,Sheryl Crow and Sarah McLaughlan and enjoyed melodic,lyrical music that really made you think and feel.
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Country Music Explosion:What are your main impulses to write music?

Nikki Briar:Whatever hits me it just hits me and sparks something!It can be random,it mostly is.I am not the type that can sit in a quiet room by myself and just get into a zone,I am more inspired surrounded by sounds,people,and movement.The more stimulation,the more ideas I pick up and develop the inspiration to create a story.I wrote my song BIG RED TRUCK while sitting in my truck listening to country music on the radio on a beautiful night,it took me 15minutes to write the lyrics because the words came to me as I was driving home that night.I actually still laugh at that moment because my husband was texting me “why are you just sitting in the truck? Are you ok?” and I kept hitting ignore lol
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Country Music Explosion:Song writing have changed considerably over the past century. What, do you feel, could – or should - be new forms and formats for song writing?

Nikki Briar:Writing is a form of expression and story telling,there should be no structure or format when it comes to expression. I say write your heart out! When putting a song together,the format obviously needs to be more organized and structured when piecing together the melody.It depends on the artist and their style of music but it all starts with an idea. Even if it doesn’t become a song, just write!
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Country Music Explosion:Music-What's your view on the value of music today?

Nikki Briar:Music has definitely evolved over the centuries and even over the years of my lifetime.It is amazing to hear and see the changes and styles of genres that have developed,faded out and even come back.I have always values music since it was just part of our household and I felt as an educator that was a huge part of child development and I wanted to share that with the children I taught.I think music needs to start at a young age and it helps develop growth, expression and personality.It is sad when schools have to downsize or even terminate music programs due to budget cuts.I remember my music classes in elementary and middle school and it was my most favorite class to attend!To learn songs,theory and get to explore various instruments was not only fun for me but for my fellow classmates who didn’t even grow up to be musicians, just appreciators of music.
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Country Music Explosion:Which instruments do you play?

Nikki Briar:Aside from singing,the first instrument I learned to play were the drums in middle school.My father was and is an incredible drummer and was in a national and international touring band called THE VICTORIANS and so being a daddy’s girl I had to also learn the drums!I was the first girl in middle school to join the school band playing the snare drum and tympani.I learned how to read music and theory and learned piano as well like my mother who was a classically trained piano player.Unfortunately,I did not have the patience to go far with piano and became interested in guitar.My uncle was a touring jazz guitarist and so amazingly talented and taught me in middle school to play.I learned songs by Hanson and BackStreet Boys (of course!) and later Shania Twain and Garth Brooks in middle school.
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Country Music Explosion:Which famous musicians do you admire?

Nikki Briar:I have always admired Garth Brooks and his passion for music and the way he has developed the evolvement of the country music scene.I also admire Kenny Chesney because he is not only talented but hard working and I love his style and twist with the Caribbean style in country music.
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Country Music Explosion:Have you been in competitions? Any prizes?

Nikki Briar:I'm a finalist for the Nash Next radio contest in New York this Wednesday and if I win I go to nashville in October to compete nationally.I've also been a featured artist at the TASTE OF COUNTRY music festival in Hunter Mountain NY
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Country Music Explosion:Do you get nervous before a performance or a competition?

Nikki Briar:Not at all,actually very much opposite!LOL I always enjoyed being the“center of attention”as a child,entertaining and singing for anyone who would listen,putting on shows in my bedroom and having my stuffed animals and dolls be the audience.I lived on stage as a child and throughout highschool and college,doing musical and talent shows.I love the feeling of being on stage,seeing the fans singing along and enjoying themselves.I was also on TV a few times and loved it!I was recently on Fox 5 NEW YORK STAR OF THE DAY as a finalist on the show and got to perform with Bernie Williams and his amazing band,what an incredible experience I was so blessed to take part in.
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Country Music Explosion:How do you balance your music with other obligations - friends,family, job?

Nikki Briar:It was tricky at first but going into 7years of this being my career, it now has a balance but there is always something that shakes it up a little. My husband and family are a big support and I could not do it without them. My friends understand my time is limited as we perform and tour over 200days out of the year, so when I have downtime we enjoy relaxing with family and friends and of course our 6 furbabies (5 cats and one pup!).
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Country Music Explosion:Where can your music be purchased?

Nikki Briar:My music is available on all platforms making it easy for fans to access! Spotify, itunes, apple music, amazon, cd baby, and on my website at www.nikkibriar
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Country Music Explosion:Do you have any new releases coming out soon?if so,what is the name of the song and is it available now for pre-order?

Nikki Briar:The launching of my 4th EP and official music video entitled AFTER THE NEW WEARS OFF is coming out within a month.
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Country Music Explosion:Are you currently doing gigs?if so where?

Nikki Briar:My summer national tour BOOTS AND BEACHES TOUR,I will be performing with Rodney Atkins October 21st in NY,Check my website for more Tour Dates
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Country Music Explosion:Have you performed with any Established Artist?

Nikki Briar:I've opened for Tim McGraw at taste of country, LoCash, Chase Bryant, Chris Janson, Trick Pony, the Outlaws, Outshyne, Cassadee Pope, Old Southern Moonshine Revival, Blackhawk, BlackBerry Smoke, Blackjack Billy, Granger Smith,Rodney Atkins in October
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Country Music Explosion:Do you have social media accounts where fans can reach out to you?if so,what is the URL for them?

Nikki Briar:Yes,I can be found at the following,

Facebook:www.facebook.com/nikkibriar

Twitter: www.twitter.com/nikkibriar

YouTube: www.youtube.com/nikkibriar1

Instagram..... www.instagram.com/nikki_briar_official
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Country Music Explosion:When it comes to your music,Do you have one that You're most proud of?If so what is the name of it?

Nikki Briar:I've been proud of every song I have written and cowritten and have been fortunate to work with such talented writers, producers and musicians when creating my albums.I am proud of my first single"A SOLDIER'S PRINCESS" As it was the gateway to my country music career and.the song expresses my love for my soldier,a song many military spouses have thanked me for and have related too.It was an honor a few years ago to hear my song was the first dance for a couples military wedding,an absolute blessing which still brings tears to my eyes when I read the story the bride sent me.Ever since that album,I made sure each album had a military related song on them and that the soldiers of our free country are always thanked in the credits on the album.
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This Concludes the interview,We hope you enjoyed it.

Photo credit goes to Anthony Fiore