Voted Best Singer-Songwriter 2013 for Jezzebel Magazine Atlanta, rising star Hannah Thomas is making a memorable splash in the music industry rivaled only by the successes of her inspired counterparts, including The Indigo Girls, Brandi Carlile and a pre-The Voice Vicci Martinez. It's a grassroots-decorated path few musicians ever have the opportunity to experience through to completion and one Thomas isn't veering away from any time soon.
The 23-year-old Georgia native is the first one to admit that her style might not be everyone else's sort … and that's not an issue for her in any sense of the word. "I know in today's world you kinda have to pick a genre, but I'm just leaving it up for the world to decide for themselves. I just wanna make music," Thomas recently told Curve magazine.
While Thomas' latest release is titled Goodbye on Wasted Time, the newly signed Capital Records artist is anything but a waste of time.
"I just started making music that I wanted to make and not just for commercial success. … It's about a journey. It's about becoming myself. Even as far as coming out and livingliving as a gay woman and everything in between," she said.
Becoming herself most certainly involved a lot of posturing behind-the-scenes before big industry picked up her beats for worldwide distribution. Thomas was a staple on the lesbian festival circuit and developed a quick kinship with fellow singer-songwriter extraordinaire Amy Ray. One of Thomas' songs on Goodbye on Wasted Time is called "Pacifier" and it conveniently pairs her with the more experienced Ray.
"Even as adults we need pacifiers, not the actual thing, but something that makes us happy, keeps us occupied," Thomas said.
"And some people have, you know, ideas that they'd want for you, and for you to make them happy. And 'Pacifier' is about being yourself and saying, 'Hey, this is who I am. This is who I wanna be. And I need to say this, and I need to do this for myself so that I can live my life the way I wanna live my life and actually, you know, not live a lie.'"
So, what exactly is Wasted Time in Thomas' world? She told Yahoo Music, "'Goodbye on Wasted Time' is a song on the album. Basically, the song embodies everything I've learned in the last couple years in the music business and in my personal life. It's really all about new beginnings and taking lessons learned and using them as a compass for everything here on out."
It's not an easy stretch of the imagination to credit country music entirely on this album. In fact, Thomas' eclectic musical interests are strewn about throughout and offers a little something for every genre fanatic.
"I grew up listening to The Judds and Tina Turner with my mom and Black Sabbath and Van Halen with my dad. Early on I was drawn to artists like Terri Clark and Garth Brooks. As I got older it was Indigo Girls and Tori Amos. I continue to be influenced every day so my influences are everywhere from Janis Joplin and Johnny Cash to Alice In Chains and Brandi Carlile," she shared.
Thomas is bringing her rocking country music-ish vibe to Fat Dan's in Indianapolis at 8 p.m. on Saturday, July 13, then over to Elbo Room in Chicago at 8 p.m. on Monday, July 15. From there, she heads back over to the East Coast everywhere from Decatur,Ga., to Nashville and Charlotte, N.C.
Tickets are available for her shows onlineat www.hannahthomasband.com/on_tour.