Things have been very hectic as of late in the career of Columbia recording artist Leah Turner. She walked the red carpet at last weekend’s ACM Awards, and recently made her second performance on the Grand Ole Opry. Turner has been also been enjoying the attention that she has gained from her very first single, “Take The Keys,” which peaked at No. 37 on the Country Airplay chart. The energetic record has been a fun one for Turner to perform.
“It’s a lot of fun, and it feels good to have a single out there that broke the top-40. People have been singing along with it, and I just hope it brightens up peoples’ summer as we’re waking into it.”
The single has also got the attention of many male fans of the song who have responded to one line in the song in particular “I can’t tell you the Tweets from people that have said ‘I’ll take the keys and be your Steve McQueen,” she said. “It’s so cute and sweet. It’s cool that it has resonated with people.”
Turner has just released her second single, “Pull Me Back,” which reflects a different sound for the California songstress. “It shows a softer side of me. We all get into moments in relationships where we build up walls, and hugging the edge of the bed seems like a better idea than hugging the one lying next to you. We all push away and sometimes you just need to let down the walls and forgive, no matter how big or small the fight is,” she says, admitting that she has lived the lyrics first-hand. “I wrote about it, and it’s a personal experience that I went through.”
A true California cowgirl, Turner recalls traveling the rodeo circuit with her parents, and the music that went along with it. “A lot of my first musical memories were of a lot of Christian music because I was raised in the Church,” she recalled, but also admits that country music was very much a part of her upbringing. “There was also Garth Brooks, George Strait, Patty Loveless, and Chris LeDoux — that was my childhood. I remember going from rodeo to rodeo over the weekends, and my Mom and Dad singing ‘Hard Workin’ Man.’ We would just scream that out loud. That’s how I feel about my dad. He can do anything.”
Turner said it was while attending a Trisha Yearwood concert that she first knew what she wanted to do with her life and career. “I was sitting there in the crowd and remember hearing her hit this one note, and she fell on the ground because she was putting her all into it. A tear fell to my eye, and I thought ‘That’s what I want to do.’ As you grow, you figure out who you are and who you aren’t but I always wanted to be a singer.”
On the basis of a performance in front of Kenny Loggins, she was persuaded to make the move to Los Angeles. She began to work with record producer Humberto Gatica and David Foster. As grateful as she was for that experience, she knew there was one place she wanted – and needed to be. “I just woke up and realized that I had to be in Nashville. It was a risk because I was close to my mom and dad. In the past two years, I’ve seen them three times. So, that was very hard for me – being able to hop in the car and see them. I had some amazing opportunities out there. But, I just felt that I needed to water my roots, and that’s country music. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to pull out roots, but it’s very hard. That’s my foundation. I packed up my truck and Diesel, my bulldog, and we drove cross country to come to Nashville.”
Turner will be out on the road with Brad Paisley this year, and she hopes that her music can continue to strike a chord with the audience. “I have been able to write all my songs that are on the record, so these are all personal experiences that I have went through. I believe every word that I am singing, and when you watch Trisha or Gretchen Wilson what comes across is that you feel they believe what they are singing. That’s how I want people to feel about me.”