You just released your new single, “Hell Raiser!” Congrats! Can you give us a little background on the song?
“Hell Raiser” is a song about my first encounter with the man I’ve now been with for three years. At the time of our meeting I had been very single for almost two years and was still not looking. It was a mutual friend’s birthday party at Red Door in Midtown that he made sure that I was going to be attending. I remember sitting at the bar and all of the sudden he just appeared. He wouldn’t stop talking to me and he wouldn’t leave me alone. I had been so single for so long that I was completely clueless to the fact that he was actually trying to court me, like, the old school gentlemen way. So naturally I quickly decided he was a weirdo and I needed to escape the situation. I immediately starting telling him all the things about myself that would make him think twice before continuing this evening.
So the song is a three part story of how are evening went. In the first verse I tell him how I’ve been to jail, not exactly a notable experience for anyone looking to start a relationship. In the second verse, I stroke his ego and let him pay for my drinks and I entertain his conversations and dance with his, because after all, I could not deny he was handsome and had good taste in music. But in the back of my head I was just getting free drinks and free attention, I knew I was saving money and going home alone. By the third verse I was just trying to save myself from myself because I could feel he was starting to get my attention. I immediately called over my three best friends, the guys in my band at the time, and they immediately started playing my big brothers and kind of pushed him out of the circle. Hence the line, “We don’t care what your name is here what kind of salvation you sell. I’m just a woman trying to do my thing, can’t you just let me raise hell?!” But obviously all my efforts were worthless because we have been together now for almost three years. He’s amazing.
How did you know when you had the right songs for your upcoming debut album?
I knew I had the right songs because none of them were the same. They did not fit in a box and all of them are autobiographical. I have been in Nashville for eight years and have taken my fair share of whacks at writing songs and getting them alive in the studio, but none were successes. They did not feel like they were me, or what I was trying to say as an artist and as a human. They were not what I wanted to present myself to the world with. It was kind of the cliché “when you know you know” moment.
Are there any songs that didn’t make the album that you now wish you included?
No. There are songs I have written since that I believe are another project in the making, but this album is in its entirety. It is whole and its own family. All the members came home for Christmas and are sitting in the living room hugging each other and sharing stories. There’s no more room on the couch for others.
What impact do you feel you music has on this chaotic world of ours?
I think the music is therapeutic. That is what I hope to give to those who hear it. There are a few humdingers on there that will rip your heart out. “Home” and “Weed and a Rosary,” cause tears, nostalgia, and heart break. But there are also songs of female empowerment. “A Lover of You" and “Hell Raiser” are both chick songs screaming from the rooftops how much fun it is to be a sassy lady that will have you jamming in your car driving 90 and you don’t even realize it until the blue and red lights are behind you. “Drunk Gypsies” is a downright love song. It’s an appreciation song for the one you love and what’s to come of that love. “Scars” and “Hammer and Nails” are just straight-up life songs. They are songs about being human and how life can knock you around, but eventually you have to stand back up, shake the dust off, and maybe even have a laugh at yourself.
What’s your advice for young artists trying to establish a name for themselves? Especially young females that may see you as a role model.
BE YOU. Very cliché, but it is truly the best advice. It took me until age twenty eight to know who I am as not only an artist, but as a human. I think that is the main reason why this is my debut album. I had songs; I had the tools to create the music, and the people to help me to do it. But something inside of me told me that I was not done cooking yet. There was a lot of simmering left to do. Twenty Eight is a good year for me, as far as having my feet on the ground, but my head healthily in the clouds.
Did you always want to be a musician or was there a specific moment that something happened that made you think "this is what I want to do with my life." If so, what was it?
I have always known music and me were going to be a thing. There was a point in college where I decided to go to school for music therapy, which was my way of putting the band aid on for my family and my peace of mind saying “Okay, I’m doing music still, but technically speaking this is a “real job” so no one can look down their nose at me.” Fortunately that band aid was not big enough so I ripped it off, left school, and moved to Nashville, never looking back.
How do you stay connected with your fans?
Instagram!! Social media is SO IMPORTANT for all of us independent artists! It is truly the vein to our existence in our fans lives. It is the way we get our music out into the world, into your ears, and into their ears, and on your screens. I am not sure how well we would be able to function as independent artists without it.
If you could collaborate with one artist dead or alive, who would it be?
Dave Ghrol, Willie Nelson, or Kacey Musgraves. All three at once would be cool too.
What was your first concert?
My first four concerts, actually, were the Backstreet Boys haha
Now that the album is finished what’s next?
Promoting it, getting it to people I haven’t met, letting it simmer in their ears and lives and letting the songs take on their own new meanings with new people.
Anything else you want to share with our readers and your fans?
Thanks for letting me into your worlds :) and thanks for listening to mine.
Pink hair. Tattoos. A sassy attitude to go with her edgy guitar licks and gritty power vocals. If you’ve ever listened to live music in Nashville, you may have seen this soul bearing independent artist entertaining locals and tourists alike with her band, Lady and the Gents. Tera Lynne Fister catches the room on fire with a magic her mama used to call psychedelic honkytonk rock. With a family line of musical talent and exposure to a wide variety of genres since childhood, the St Louis native is now making her music her way in the heart of Music City. Her self-titled debut album, set to release February 21, 2020, is what the songstress affectionately labels “28 years of Tera in a 7 song diary” and will feature the first of three singles dropping as early as November 15th. An all-star team includes co writers and producers Thom Donovan and Christopher Griffiths of the Will Hoge band, as well as five time Grammy award winner Ray Kennedy, who mastered the project. Always one to collaborate, Tera has also lent her talents as rhythm guitarist and background vocalist for Kelsey Hickman, opening for acts like Neal McCoy and Alabama. She can also be seen singing BGVs on tapings of “Real Country”, a singing competition that aired on the USA Network in 2018. Eight years of honing her craft professionally in Nashville has reiterated the importance of growth, community, and perseverance for the self-proclaimed “searcher of art and lover of color”. Tera’s creative input and gifts of empathy and compassion are just the right combination for communicating with audiences on all levels, creating a sense of nostalgia and oneness.