A Southern Norah Jones: Five Questions with Singer-songwriter Beth Snapp

Mackenzie Moore • Aug 20, 2018 at 8:50 AM

Kingsport native Beth Snapp grew up honing her singer-songwriter skills in private, avoiding singing in front of others until high school. 

On Aug. 31, she will release her latest extended play track, “Don’t Apologize,” and she’s currently spending her time traveling to surrounding areas to perform her original songs.

Her last album, “Write Your Name Down,” was released in February 2017.

1. What motivates the work that you do?

“It took me awhile to see it, but I think at the end of the day I am inspired by human connection. My writing is almost always motivated by telling fairly universal yet personal stories that others can connect with.

“There are just certain joys, hurts and perplexities we have all felt, and I find joy in people telling me that my songs truly meant something to them. My other hat is being an occupational therapist, so my natural personality gravitates toward helping others. When I write songs that in some way have helped someone, I've done my job.”

2. How have you honed your singing and songwriting skills over the years?

“Well, life certainly gave me some creative fodder. Otherwise, I would say it comes down to observation. Primarily, observing the craft of fellow writers and how they approach a song always gave me insight into alternative opportunities to look at a situation.

“I think observing every day life and the folks around me, learning moments and feelings people are gravitated toward and how they connect — that's also a major factor.

“If you want to touch people with your music, you have to know what touches them, and get out of your own head from time to time.”

3. What are some inspirations for your music?

“Like so many, I was inspired by the recent climate, politically and socially. However, I did not want to make a political statement. I simply wanted to say, 'Could we all just get over ourselves for a moment and love both our selves one another? Isn't that what we are supposed to do?'

“So that's the theme — love and acceptance. It's pretty simple, or it should be. I'm not judging though, I can be the worst when it comes to self-acceptance. So perhaps there are a few reminders for me, too.

4. If you could be any animal, what would you be, and why?

“A cat. I am already a cat. I feel like to break down why I am a cat would deter from my cat-like nature. Cat people will get it.”

5. List some goals for your future.

“You know, that should not be as hard of a question as it is. It's not that I don't have a vision for my music, but there is a certain amount of uncertainty in this business, and frankly I'm not exactly sure where I want to land just yet.

“I'm still figuring that out, and I'm constantly learning new information to shape my direction. I do know that the goal is growth, and I will absolutely grow. It's been an incremental, sometimes subtle process, but I assure you it's calculated, it has a path, and I'm not done yet.”

Quick Facts

Name, age and job: Beth Snapp, 31, singer-songwriter

Hobbies: Cooking, trying new food and outdoor activities

Favorite food: Noodles of any kind

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