Stephanie Quayle Chats About Being ‘Selfish’, Reba, Her Nationwide Tour With KOA & Performing For The Presidents

.Stephanie Quayle Chats About Being 'Selfish', Reba, Her Nationwide Tour With KOA & Performing For The Presidents

This week, we have been enjoying all of the great country music that Myrtle Beach, SC has to offer at Carolina Country Music Fest. And let me tell you, it is hot. I got a chance to sit in a nice air conditioned RV and chat with rising country star Stephanie Quayle about her new single, “Selfish” and her very cool nationwide tour with KOA. I am not sure what was cooler, the lovely and engaging Mrs Quayle or the AC. 😉

Stephanie Quayle Chats About Being ‘Selfish’, Reba, Her Nationwide Tour With KOA & Performing For The Presidents

EPR: So, we are on this cool RV. I was reading that you did a tour in a RV. Is that correct?

Stephanie Quayle: So we had a song out that is on our album, “Love The Way You See Me,” and it was our 2nd single called, “Winnebago.” This song, it’s just a feel good, roll your windows down and go have the adventure of your life. So, as I was thinking about the song, I was like, “I haven’t been to a lot of these places. We need to go live the lyrics. We need to go live this song.” So my team was like, “OK.”

How am I going to do that, though? How am I going to end up at the Empire State Building? Hoover Dam and some of these places we could get to but it was just one of those things, you know? I didn’t give them a ton of time to plan.

So, we ended up teaming up with Winnebago and RV Loft and KOA [Kampgrounds of America] and we just kind of created this wild, musical tour experience while we went to all of these other places. So, we would stay at KOA campgrounds across the country instead of hotels. We would wake up either in our Winnebago or these tiny, little cabins that are just incredible.

EPR: They are so nice looking.

Stephanie Quayle: So nice! Like I grew up thinking of KOA tents and I mean, they know what they are doing. So, we went to go see the world in the coolest ways. It was such an amazing experience and, honestly, there is just something about your home being wherever you are and getting to live that to the fullest extent. Yeah, we showed up in New York, with our Winnebago and sang on the Empire State Building on the 86th floor. It was just crazy! I was like, “What are we doing and how are we doing this?” You just keep saying yes, and it works out.

EPR: So how long did you tour like that?

Stephanie Quayle: We did 9,000 miles criss crossing the country. We kicked it off in June at CMA Festival last year and we went throughout the summer. And then we started up with KOA again in January in Florida and then we will be doing that again this year. So we are just going wherever the music leads us.

Stephanie Quayle Chats About Being 'Selfish', Reba, Her Nationwide Tour With KOA & Performing For The Presidents

EPR: Are you doing CMA Fest again this year?

Stephanie Quayle: Yes, so we played yesterday. We go to New York tomorrow and open for LOCASH and then we fly back to Nashville Sunday morning and we play the Radio Disney stage. It’s bonkers, it’s amazing. We also got to perform for the presidents!

EPR: Tell us about that!

Stephanie Quayle: Just the 5 former Presidents of the United States of America! Real low key stuff here [laughs]. So that was wild. When we got that phone call, I didn’t even really know how to absorb what was about to happen. There was a process of the clearances that have to happen and picking of the songs that really is surreal. And we got to perform at Texas A&M.

So, when we got there, we were told that we were going to be able to meet the presidents prior to the performance. It’s so weird to say this out loud [laughs]. My husband and I, we got to go take a photograph and meet the presidents. And there are Secret Service everywhere and you are like minding your Ps and Qs so much. You don’t want to do anything to get kicked out, because I hadn’t performed yet, you know? We go in and it’s so surreal and President Clinton was the first to say hello to us and then President Bush and we just went down the line and everyone was so gracious, so kind and it was unbelievable. So unbelievable. I felt like we were all friends.

So, I get on stage. I’ve got my ears in. I’ve got my wireless mic and I just head out there and I did not realize that they would be front row.

EPR: No pressure, right?

Stephanie Quayle: I know! I didn’t even really know what I had done until I watched the video back and I’m like, “Hello.” It was so amazing though, so special. And the next morning we were actually on a flight and we saw the Secret Service, they have the pins and such, and we saw someone that looked familiar, thinking maybe he was a Congressman or someone like that. It was President Carter. And he’s truly one of the most precious human beings I have ever, ever encountered in my life.

And we are just sitting there waiting and [wondering] “What’s going to happen?” And once everyone got seated, he went and said hello to every, single person on the flight. And that precious human gets to our end and I’m like, “Hello.” And he was like, “Hey, I saw you when you came on the flight but I didn’t want to bother you.” And I’m like, “But you’re you.” It was amazing and he was very kind about the show. And to be able to have that experience and for such an incredible cause…

EPR: And to be so humble…

Stephanie Quayle: I just love it when people come together for their fellow American, their fellow person. And that was what was so obvious, that this had nothing to do with politics and it had everything to do with people. To see that brought me so much joy knowing that when America rallies it’s unlike anything that I have ever seen. I think they raised close to $50 million. Just to be able to help so many that have been affected by the Hurricane, it was really something.

Just when you ask me, I’m like Forrest Gump. I mean, we work our tails off, and we’re striving and keeping our heads down and working so hard but to be able to have moments like that, it was historic.

EPR: Do you mind if I ask how old you are?

Stephanie Quayle: You can totally ask how old I am. I am actually 38.

EPR: No, you’re not! I thought early 20s.

Stephanie Quayle: I love you so much. I think it’s good living and country music.

Stephanie Quayle Chats About Being 'Selfish', Reba, Her Nationwide Tour With KOA & Performing For The Presidents

EPR: Exactly! So who are your inspirations?

Stephanie Quayle: Oh man! Well, are we talking music or in life?

EPR: Everything. Anyone who is just a big inspiration.

Stephanie Quayle: Well, I gotta start with music because I recently got to meet this woman and she blew me away: Reba McEntire. I got to meet her 2 days before the Opry debut. I mean, imagine getting a pep talk from Reba… Forrest Gump. [laughs] You know, you have all these ideas of people and she’s such an icon. I don’t know about you but it’s always a nerve wracking thing because what if they are not who you made them out to be in your mind. And she blew what I thought of her out of the water. She was so exquisite and kind and she gets it from her mama, her parents. I mean, she’s just incredibly genuine and authentic and it’s awesome. So, she is even more so an inspiration and an influence in my life now.

And, of course, Dolly Parton. I have not yet met her but she is just extraordinary. And when you think of Dolly Parton, you smiled. I watched it just happen.

EPR: Right!

Stephanie Quayle: And that I think for me, as an artist and entertainer, that’s one of my goals. You know, there is only one Dolly. It’s not about being Dolly. But having that kind of impact, where, when you think of Garth Brooks, when you think of Reba, that it makes you feel good. I think that’s what I really live for.

When it comes to inspirational people, I think I just look at anyone whose had that story of, you know, we learn the most from our failures. And I love that. And I love reading everyone’s “why” and “how” and what made them keep going. I think it’s like anything in life. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. If it’s in your guts and your heart and you have to have it, whatever it is, you’ll find a way.

EPR: Tell us about your current single.

Stephanie Quayle: Oooh, “Selfish.” [she hums a little at the man sitting near her in the RV and laughs] So that’s my husband. How awkward would that have been if it was just some random… so there’s a guy sitting there and we’ll just use him as the muse. [laughs]

So this song, I was feeling the words and the lyrics and I went into that writing session with Andy Wills and Tori Tullier and I was feeling selfish and just wanting more time with the one I live and not wanting to share him with his work and life and all the things, we get pulled in 1,000 different directions. And Tori started playing the keys and it just started happening. And then Andy on the guitar. It was one of those songwriting moments that you live for because it’s usually… it’s not pure magic every time. You gotta work and you gotta edit. You gotta change things. This was magic.

And we took it to the fans and immediately we started playing it at shows. That’s where we could see that, “Ok, there’s something here.” And we played it in every form, from full band to acoustic. It’s on the album, “Love The Way You See Me.” And then taking it to radio and watching it resonate like it has is just…the fans know. So what the fans say goes.

Check out Stephanie Quayle’s tour schedule here. And be sure to stay at Myrtle Beach KOA Resort next time you are in town for Carolina Country Music Fest.

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