You’ll want to listen up to Kylie Rothfield’s declaration of strength after being knocked down in the tempestuous title track to her EP, when the younger performer takes the Bridgestone Main Stage at Nashville Pride on Saturday, June 14.
Showcasing that no matter how many times we’re knocked down, we get right back up, its chorus could easily apply to the many struggles and victories the LGBT community has faced in its move towards equality. And as we celebrate the paths we’ve blazed this year, Rothfield also celebrates her Nashville Pride Festival debut.
Rothfield has long used her music as part of her allyship to the LGBT community. “I grew up with a few very close guy friends who came out in high school,” Rothfield recalls. “Even though we were fortunate enough to live in San Francisco—which is generally very accepting—I still saw their struggles every single day. I saw the disapproving stares and heard the horrible words and just watched them struggle to truly be themselves.”
After receiving early decision to Berklee College of Music, Rothfield left California for Boston, carrying those moments with her. When questioned about inspiration during an Artist of the Month interview Rothfield recalled, “a couple songs about an ignorant, insensitive comment a man said about one of my friends that is gay.”
Showered with awards and scholarship while attending Berklee College of Music, the pinnacle perhaps was a private clinic with Grammy Award-winning Best New Artist Paula Cole. “I was honored to meet [Paula Cole] and play my song for her . . . I was so nervous, I think I almost passed out,” Rothfield laughs.
In 2012, Rothfield set her sights on Nashville. With an indisputable blend of hunger and talent, Rothfield saturated herself with every opportunity to play and learn when she first arrived. And now, two years later, celebrates the recent release of her EP Ragdoll, a collection of three soul-steeped tracks and a “musical love letter” to her new home.
And while she describes the last two years as feeling like “an organized chaos,” the singer-songwriter is showing no signs of slowing down. Rothfield just wrapped a spring tour, she’s already recorded two songs with Music City maven Victoria Shaw, is writing for her new record and making her Bluebird Cafe debut June 22.
photo credit Solomon Davis