Country songstress Olivia Ooms is making her mark with her single, “Name on This Town,” released today. The song was written with and produced by ACM Award winner Jamie O’Neal and was inspired by the eighteen-year-old Huntington Beach, California native’s original plans to move to Nashville after graduating high school. However, those plans changed due to the pandemic, with Ooms staying in California. She now relates the lyrics to her current experience as a California Polytechnic State University student in San Luis Obispo. Ooms is no stranger to O’Neal as she worked with her on her recent singles “Hideaway,” “Baggage,” and “California Country.”
As a rising country artist, Ooms has had the opportunity to perform at CMA Fest, and open for Lady A, Old Dominion, and country icon Tanya Tucker where she invited her on stage to perform her 1972 hit “Delta Dawn.” Another country artist’s dream is to perform at the history Ryman Auditorium which Ooms accomplished with her debut performance in 2019 for the Christmas 4 Kids show.
“Name on This Town” Stream/Download Link:
What was the inspiration behind your new single, “Name on This Town?”
I wrote “Name on This Town” as a high school senior getting ready to move to Nashville, the town where I just felt all my dreams would come true! I had stars in my eyes as I dreamed of my next chapter experiencing life in Nashville. I’d spent so much time there already and really knew and felt the vibe. It filled me with excitement, and I just knew I had to write this song because I felt so many people out there can relate to moving to a new town and being ready to just make it their own! It can be for a career, family, love, or even for no reason at all, but when we make that commitment to move and uproot our lives, we also make a commitment to being the best we can be! And that’s what this song is all about, owning who you are, rolling with it, and making those dreams happen!
What was the songwriting and recording process with Jamie O’Neal?
I feel very fortunate to have met Jamie O’Neal at a women in country event. She is so beautiful inside and out. I had no idea how truly musically gifted and talented she is until I sat down with her in the studio. She blew me away! Her wisdom, along with that raw talent, has kept me striving to live up to her standards over the past few years. She gets me to dig in deep and asks only that I have fun, learn something, and do my best! Jamie is so cool and so much fun. I wish I could clone her!
Share with us a little about your background in music.
When I was eleven, I spontaneously auditioned to be in the new Kidz Bop crew! Out of thousands, after many callbacks, I was brought to Dallas with ten others for a weekend boot camp! I didn’t make the final five but was told to learn an instrument and get vocal coaching! They told my parents I had a raw talent that needed developing! I picked up that guitar, took vocal and dance lessons, joined a girl’s group in LA, and never looked back! I had found my peace and knew music would forever frame who I am! I am so thankful for everyone along the way who guided me and believed in me, especially my guitar teacher Jay Lawless who taught me the basics and then just sat back and let me do my thing, jamming with me, encouraging me, making me laugh, and ultimately turning me onto the world of country. It was always in my wheelhouse, but he just made me understand it fully and feel it In my soul.
What do you hope your fans/listeners take away with them when they listen to your music?
This is absolutely the whole reason I love writing songs so much! To connect with people, all around the world, I feel we can relate with one another and learn from each other through music. Songwriting is only one aspect of it, though! It’s the entire production process, to bring an idea to life, that is so important! I hope my listeners understand that nothing is impossible! I want to inspire others to find their passion and work hard, relentlessly doing their best, to know at the end of the day, like all my songs suggest, that you have done your best, and for that, you can be proud and thankful! And along the way, don’t forget to have fun and enjoy the special moments!
When did you first pick up the guitar, and what drew you to that instrument?
The first instrument I tried was flute! But I loved to sing, so I simply knew that was not for me! After Kidz Bop, I knew the only instrument I wanted to play was guitar! I babysat for a friend of my mom who knew this dream, so instead of paying me with cash, he showed up with the most beautiful acoustic guitar I’d ever seen! It was huge, but he’d had it strung with soft strings, and I took that Bedell everywhere with me! A short while later, I became an ambassador for Daisy Rocks Girl Guitars and had a super cool white guitar! Next, I got a killer Fender electric sent to me after they had seen me play at NAMM! I used that in my performing arts performances all the time as well as at the street fair in my hometown! For my sixteenth birthday, my parents bought me a beautiful used Taylor that I use in all my performances today. As a brand ambassador for Ovation guitars, I absolutely recommend their guitars but have not had the opportunity to play one as much as I’d like. But when I do, I have to say, they deliver an incredible sound that will stop you in your tracks! Playing guitar for me comes as naturally as breathing. It’s how I communicate, how I calm myself, and how I find joy! No one else in my family plays guitar except for my cousin Matt, so at the holidays, it’s up to us to bring the music! As long as everyone else dances and sings along, then we can have peace knowing we made people happy!
What’s next for you in 2021?
I was recently asked to be the Global Youth Ambassador for Airline Ambassadors International! Mixing my music to help such important causes as bringing clean water to Native American reservations here in the United States and so much more around the globe brings me such great joy! I have many local events I’ll be doing and many more being added every day, so be sure to check my website OliviaOoms.com and my social media @theoliviaooms for updates!