Adam Wakefield Talks Songwriting: ‘It’s a Battle’
Adam Wakefield is more than a stellar vocalist: The The Voice Season 10 runner-up is also establishing himself as a musician and a songwriter, becoming part of the ever-growing Nashville music scene. But while Wakefield enjoys writing songs, especially in such a diverse community, he admits that songwriting isn't the biggest priority for him.
"I think the problem for me is that the struggle, starting at the bottom as a songwriter in town, is such a journey, like a battle to get to a point where somebody’s listening to your songs that matters," Wakefield tells The Boot. "It’s a battle filled with co-writes with people you don’t want to write with, hanging out at bars every night, rubbing elbows with people, talking to people about stuff, becoming a part of this writing community and that writing community. It’s this big machine, and you’ve got to spend a lot of time on it."
However, Wakefield acknowledges, he still enjoys the craft of writing, and hopes his time on The Voice allows him more opportunities to hone his craft in the future.
"Once I got a view of the scene and saw people who had been here for X amount of years, and how talented I thought they were or weren’t, how far they were getting, I was like, ‘If I come in at this at this level, it’s going to take me forever to get my songs in front of somebody that matters, and I just don’t know if I have it in me to go out to bars to do this all the time,'" Wakefield concedes. "So, for me, I still wrote with people I really liked to write with, but I let that take the backseat, and, thankfully, doing the show has given me the opportunity to really pursue a publishing deal and hopefully get some songs cut."
Wakefield has his sights set on releasing his freshman project, and while he says that he will hopefully write some of his own songs, it isn't a priority for him.
"I do like co-writing, and I have friends of mine that I write with," Wakefield explains. "I didn’t come here only for songwriting; I came here to be a working musician and all of that other stuff, and to just get better as a musician. I had kind of hung up the artist thing for a while when I moved here."
Wakefield's new single, "Blame It on Me," which will be released in March, is one that he actually didn't write, but it resonates strongly with him.
"I never imagined the first single I would release would be a song that I didn't write, but Nolan Neal brought it to me, and it immediately clicked that this would be the perfect song to introduce me to radio," says Wakefield. "Nolan told me, 'This is one of the best songs I've ever written, but it was never really suited for my voice. It took years to find the right person to cut it, but the first time I heard you sing, I knew you were the guy.'
"The song is very catchy but also retains a rough, raw feel and delivery from the band and my voice," Wakefield adds. "A lot of fans have been messaging-slash-tweeting me about putting new music out, and [I] know this song will not disappoint."
Even if Wakefield doesn't record his own songs, he still hopes that others get to hear them someday.
"I've written a lot of songs, and a lot of them are songs I wouldn’t cut, but I think they’re still good songs," the singer shares. "I would love a publishing deal, because I think I have a lot of great songs that other people could cut, that I’d love to hear on the radio, they’re just not my cup of tea. And a lot of that comes from doing co-writes with people. If you’re writing with somebody in the pop-country world -- like, I write with people who do pop-country, and we write great pop-country, but I’m not going to cut them."
Unforgettable Country Moments on The Voice