Amy Whitcomb Exclusive Interview

Amy WhitcombTHE STAR SCOOP:
Can you give your background story and tell people a little bit about yourself?

AMY WHITCOMB:
I grew up in Florida, so I’m an east coast girl, beach bum. I have three older brothers, just a great family. I love them. I started getting into music when I was four years old when I asked my mom if I could take piano lessons. None of my family is musical at all, which is kind of surprising. They’re all tone deaf. I just started getting more and more into music. I did the sports thing. A lot of my family is athletic, so I love to play volleyball and tennis, but it never trumped my real passion, and that was music.

I always knew that I wanted to go to BYU, and I only applied there. I got in and I was really excited and it was a tough transition but it was definitely a good thing and it was where I belonged. My sophomore year of college, I auditioned for “Noteworthy” and got it.

It’s my third year in “Noteworthy” and it’s really helped me progress as a musician and as a person. It’s taught me a lot about relationships and a lot about friendship. It’s helped me grow spiritually and musically as well. I was trying to figure out what I wanted to study in school, and I had thought to do something practical like business, and I also kind of liked anthropology, so I was playing around with the two different ideas of being in those programs…I was just miserable.

I auditioned for the school of music, and I was actually wait listed the first time I tried out, and that was really hard, and it was a humbling experience though. I think it was definitely supposed to humble me and help me. It made me more passionate about “Noteworthy” and about music in general. I started writing songs a lot more. I started trying to perform more. I decided that I needed to audition again, so next year I did, an I got in. It definitely is a perfect fit, the Media Music program at BYU. I’m trying to figure out the balance of life. Balancing this passion with friends and family.

THE STAR SCOOP:
Are you hoping to pursue a music career when you graduate?

AMY WHITCOMB:
I’m definitely looking forward to pursuing something in entertainment. Doing the show helped a lot. It gave me a little more excitement, made me more anxious to get out to L.A. and get my feet wet and start performing. I still have a year left of school, and I do want to finish my degree but I definitely want to pursue something with music.

THE STAR SCOOP:
You do have a Myspace music page so people can check out your music there. What is your sound like; how is it different from what people might have heard on The Sing-Off?

AMY WHITCOMB:
My music is quite a bit different than what “Noteworthy” does. I’m definitely a product of who I listen to. I definitely listen to a lot of pop/rock. I’m a sucker for that. I think you’ll hear elements of Michelle Branch and Sara Bareilles and Eric Hutchison and in my music.

I definitely feel that it’s a sound that people haven’t heard before, but it’s either upbeat and quirky or kind of emo ballads that are catchy. I think people generally enjoy listening to it [laughs]. I’m still trying to improve and be able to write those songs that really hit home with a lot of people. It’s kind of a journey.

THE STAR SCOOP:
Do you think that being part of an acapella group and being in “Noteworthy” has helped you in your own personal music?

AMY WHITCOMB:
Yeah. Without “Noteworthy,” I don’t think I would be in the position I am today. It trains your ear. You have to listen to other people. You have to be aware of what’s around you. You have to work really hard to make music. Also, it taught me a lot as far as I’ve had to dig in and arrange music as well for “Noteworthy.” That’s helped a lot to brush on my theory and on my piano.

It taught me a ton…to think outside the box a lot more as far as thinking up words, thinking up chords. I’ve learned so much basically. “Noteworthy” has taught me a lot about myself, too. Emotionally and spiritually as a person…those are great things to incorporate into a song. Those life lessons have also contributed to my song writing and my own music.

NOTE: You can also read more about “Noteworthy” here: http://www.noteworthyladies.com

THE STAR SCOOP:
Doing The Sing-Off was such a huge opportunity for you and for “Noteworthy.” Have you noticed any changes in you life?

AMY WHITCOMB:
It’s been really interesting! “Noteworthy,” [is] not actually affiliated with BYU, but we’re all BYU students. Our objective for the past six years as a group has been to get our name known, to make sure that everybody knows who and what it really is. So when we found out we were going to have this opportunity, we were so excited because we were like, we’re going to have more publicity in five minutes than we have in the past six years.

It’s been huge. When we’re walking around campus or we’re walking around the mall, and people come up, stare you down, and you’re like, yeah, I know, you saw me…it’s kind of fun! As far things changing, no. We have the best family. The best support. The best fans. We’re excited because I think we got a lot more fans being on the show, and that’s huge for “Noteworthy.”

THE STAR SCOOP:
Has The Sing-Off been good for acapella music? Where do you see acapella music in the spectrum of music that people are interested in?

AMY WHITCOMB:
I love acapella. When I first started, I immediately became really passionate about it. When I step back and I think about it, I’m like, wow, this is like the geekiest thing I’ve ever done [laughs]. But as I’ve done it more and more, being really involved with it, I’ve realized that it really is an art. It’s just a really, really cool idea. It brings people together, and [It's] a creative outlet to express themselves with the raw human voice.

It really was portrayed well. People could feel like, oh this is fun. There’s so many ways to do it. And that’s why acapella is so great. Even though everything falls under that genre of acapella, there’s a ton of different ways to do it. It’s totally up to you. You can do whatever you want with it.

THE STAR SCOOP:
Tell us about what was up with your hair style for The Sing-Off with the mohawk?

AMY WHITCOMB:
That’s kind of how I wear my hair normally. I don’t always wear it in a mohawk. I’ve always wanted to change my hairstyle a lot. I get bored. I like to keep it real and so on the show, I went to rehearsal a couple days before the first taping, and I just put my hair up in a faux hawk and it looked kind of stupid. People were like, oh, your hair is kind of cool. When I was sitting down in the hair chair to get my hair done for the show, she was like, what do you want me to do? I was like, well, sometimes I wear it in a mohawk. It was just down straight…she was just playing with it.

The other manager for the show came up and she was like, do your hair like how you had it the other day, all up. She described it to the hair lady, and so that was the origin of she-hawk. I liked it a lot. I wasn’t uncomfortable with it. Some people might think I didn’t choose it. I didn’t have to have the mohawk if I didn’t want to. It was an interesting ‘do. You can express yourself and be a little crazy and be a little different for performances. It’s not like I would wear a mohawk to Church. That would be inappropriate. It was fun for our group – oh “Noteworthy” had the girl with the mohawk.

THE STAR SCOOP:
For your new fans and new fans of “Noteworthy” what should people look for you in the next coming years? Should we watch your Myspace? An album in the future?

AMY WHITCOMB:
As far as “Noteworthy” goes, I’m sure that we’ll be doing a lot more traveling in the future. New albums will be coming out as well. We do enjoy our collegiate status and being able to be a big part of community, a big part of BYU, but we do want to travel even overseas to spread the acapella cheer.

As far as me personally, I think that I’m going to have a lot of different goals. I definitely want to put an album out. I’m kind of in the process right now of working on that. Stay tuned to my Myspace to see where I’m performing, what I’m up to. Hopefully one day, one of my songs will be danced to on So You Think You Can Dance [laughs]. We’ll see if my goals can really come true. I think that as long as people are hearing my music and people are touched, then I’m doing my job.

THE STAR SCOOP:
What else do you want fans to know about you, or is there anything else that you want to get out there to all of the readers?

AMY WHITCOMB:
Just that you have to stop thinking inside the box. When “Noteworthy” was doing their goals at the beginning of the year, we never, ever thought oh, let’s go on national television. Some things you just completely rule out because you’re afraid to think about them or you’re afraid of being rejected or failing. That’s stupid. That’s been the biggest lesson that we’ve all learned. It’s really helped me individually. It’s okay to think outside the box, because big things can happen, and dreams can really come true.

TheStarScoop.Com spoke with Amy Whitcomb. You might recognize her as the mohawked blonde with the big voice from “Noteworthy” on NBC’s The Sing-Off. The always-smiling-on-stage Amy talked with us about her musical background, performing as a part of “Noteworthy,” and what her future holds. We think she’s a star to keep your eye (and your ear) on.
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