I don't think I was bullied. If I was bullied, I fought back or turned the other cheek. I have been put in a box, I guess: "Oh you're blonde, you can't play brunette." And I'm always like: "You know what? I'm going to prove you wrong, I'm going to make my hair brown."— Laura Bell Bundy
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I've always sort of felt a little bit like I was on the road less traveled, so if I come across a story about a person who broke the rules, or did things differently and succeeded, that's really inspiring to me.
It always amazes me when I see young people with raw talent and passion.
What I've noticed about celebrities is, if they are really successful, they're more down-to-earth.
What I loved about country music when I was a kid was the Grand Ole Opry, was Hee Haw, was 360 degrees of entertainment.
I feel really blessed to first of all have the opportunity to do music, and second of all to have it be going well.
'Hairspray' was my first Broadway show.
In the meantime, after the show was over, I would go down and do gigs at these clubs that I wasn't even old enough to get into. That continued on, and I think what ended up happening was that I just got these incredible opportunities on Broadway.
I kept writing all these ballads; they're me speaking about life. But how am I gonna do the live show I wanna do if I don't have something I can dance to?
I always have plans to return to the stage.
I leave myself very open. I think what would be more likely is if I did a limited run of something, whether it be a play or a musical.
A lot of the music I listen to is indie rock. It's not on the radio.
You know, I had the music baskets and the writing basket.
And I had the acting. And those eggs just hatched first, and the others were slow to incubate.
And there's been occasions where I've gone brown and got parts! I'm not above doing that! I hope after this, I can get a role where it won't be: "Oh, you can't play any role other than a blonde." I'm proud of being a blonde. I'd be proud of being a brunette or a red-head. I don't think it matters.
I feel connected to a higher power when I'm making music or performing.
There's a spiritual experience for me.
I'm definitely inspired by music; I feel like I can express a part of myself, a part of my heart and my soul, that I can't express just acting by writing music or singing music. It takes the emotions to another level. I feel really connected to something else, you know.
I had a band with a girl in New York, and we would go around and do gigs.
And then I happened to start getting work as an actress.
When I was really little, I listened to Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, Barbara Mandrel, Crystal Gayle, Kenny Rogers, Willie Nelson, and Patsy Cline.
I actually had a week where I literally wrote four songs and all of them are on my album. But sometimes you'll go a week where you'll write songs and they never see the light of day. So that process takes a long time.
There's lots of sides. The CD doesn't really create a mood. It creates more of a journey. It starts out with a simple bluegrass tune, sort of melancholy and sad, like "Lovin' and Lyin'," then it's sexy and there's some funny songs in there where I'm talking, like "Designated Drunk." There's a humor side, a sexy side, but there's also a pretty sad side, the country side. It's the backwards side of me!
I'm inspired by having fun; I'm inspired by people.
I think, ultimately you know in your heart how much work you've done.
You know what you're doing, if you're being honest on stage or not. That's all you being you. But when you acknowledges it - especially with a Tony Award nomination - you just can't help with the guilty pleasure!
Try to sing exactly like an artist you hear, and then all of the sudden, you'll feel what it feels like if you're singing properly, depending on who you're mimicking.
My father has a manufacturing company in Kentucky and he's an electrical engineer. A brilliant man. A brilliant businessman. So he understands the business aspects of my business very well. My dad and I always communicate when I have to negotiate a deal.
I feel like that's a way people can change the way music is - to be guided by someone they believe in and trust. Larson and I really believed in each other. It was like brother/sister, father/daughter, we were laughing and yelling, that's how it is when you make an album! Essentially the trust was there and I got something great.
There's a responsibility to the story, but there's also the sense of fun you have. When everybody else leaves, you get to continue to create. For me, there's no other way! I really like creating from the ground up.
I had a very active imagination as a kid, and I was constantly performing, whether I was making money doing it or not, whether it was on a stage in front of 1,000 people or in the living room in front of my family.
Different personalities inspire me as an actor.
Especially quirky personalities, maybe people I wouldn't normally get along with or be friends with - I find them inspiring for my work. I find sad emotions to be inspiring and stories of great people that kind of overcame odds.
I think I would rather want to create something new, but I really did enjoy doing that show. It was a really fun show to do.
And the next album I do is going to be different because I'm going to change.
I already did that thing where I had a band - and I had a great time with a band - but it was almost like pandering to get a record label deal.
This way, if I did the album myself, and I produced it myself with my own label, it was going to be done the way I wanted to do it. If people like it or don't like it, it doesn't matter; I got something that means something to me.
Being a creative person. It's so much more rewarding when you find things on your own, to live whatever the writers are writing or to display what the director is looking for. You are the thing that everybody uses to get the story out.
Around 14, I was turned on to Shania, Reba, Merle Haggard, Garth Brooks, Trisha Yearwood... and I've followed it ever since.
When creating an album, one of the first things you have to think about is what you want your production style to be.
I started to write a lot of ballads that were sultry and had a Norah Jones-for-country kind of feel. I wanted to bring elements of old soul music and old country music.
I can't take the theater side out of myself.
I always tend to remember the funny moments.
When I lost my shoe (even though it was funny) there was something motivating about it, I just ended in this spastic emotional way. I tend to remember the more extreme moments.
One thing I can say is that as I've gotten older, I've gotten younger.
I've grown up but I've kind of immatured (but matured!) but I've allowed myself to be a kid. When I was a kid, I was so much of a professional and carried myself that way. It was crazy.
I listened to country music my whole life.
I started writing music when I was a teenager. It all came out country.
I actually met Larson [Paine] on Larchmont in Los Angeles.
He was eating and he stopped me because I was massaging my larynx. I was doing a show and trying to loosen up my throat. He had sort of this southern vibe about eating alone and talking to people. And it was funny because I had just having eaten with Larry O'Keefe and Nell Benjamin.
I am trying so hard to live in the moment and enjoy it while it's happening, because it feels like a moving freight train that I just got on, and I'm trying not to look back and get dizzy!