Sunny Ledfurd: Interview "Greatest Hits"
Sunny Ledfurd was born in Chattanooga, Tennessee and raised in Cramerton, North Carolina where he taught himself how to play the guitar at the age of fifteen. At age seventeen he began to play in many of the local bars. After numerous rejections in the early 2000’s from every major label from Los Angeles to Nashville, Ledford finally made the decision that if he was going to make it he would have to do it myself. Using money from acoustic cover shows played in bars all over the Carolina’s, he built a home studio to be able to record whenever he wanted…when the inspiration came.
Sunny and I shared some time to talk about his music and his current Greatest Hits CD.
Bev: Sunny, please tell me about your current project.
Sunny: I have a Greatest Hits album which may sound a little ridiculous, but I was trying to catch the new people who will be coming aboard. It will combine seven years worth of work on one CD.
Bev: How did you choose which of your songs over such a wide time span? Are these songs most requested that are on it?
Sunny: That is pretty much what they are. Do not play them a lot since I have so many songs, so you will have a lot of people calling and saying “Could you play that song”. That is why they are called hits.
Bev: Did you have a hard time narrowing down so it would all fit on one CD?
Sunny: No, it was pretty easy because I try to keep everything spaced apart. I had certain categories of songs I wanted to be on the CD, so those that represented their type of song the best made it.
Bev: What are the best memories from a fan has come up to you after hearing one of your songs and said something about a song that has touched your heart the most?
Sunny: The one that seems to be recurring is people saying that the songs I am singing represent what is going on in their lives.
Bev: When you hear them compliment your ability to put into words and to music to the point you have touched them like that, what goes through your mind?
Sunny: Oh, it is really cool. It is a nice feeling to know that other people are thinking the same way I am.
Bev: Has there ever been something that you have written or that you have chosen to record that was interpreted an entirely different way than you intended by the majority of listeners?
Sunny: No, it has been pretty much straight up so far.
Bev: Nothing has thrown you for a curve, like, whoa, I was not thinking of it in that way?
Sunny: No, not yet. I think sometimes some of our viewers misunderstand it, but the listeners always get it.
Bev: If you were to look back on your life and pick one song from everything you have done up to now, what would be the one that you would like people to remember you by the most?
Sunny: I would have to say in the situation right now, still trying to move this thing forward; I would have to say “Got Em” from the Devil On My Shoulder CD.
Bev: Tell me a little bit of how you arrived at this point in your career. Where you started and what it took to get where you are today.
Sunny: Putting out music CD’s and making sure they got everywhere. One of my concerns was selling CD’s. Seven years ago it was like, look, let’s just get this CD in your car. Here, take it.
Bev: How old were you when you first knew you wanted to be an entertainer and singer?
Bev: And what was your first gig? Where did you perform?
Sunny: The first one I played in a little steak house bar and got paid in cash. I thought this was it.
Bev: Do you write as well as sing?
Sunny: I do write and I play all the instruments.
Bev: You play all the instruments? What instruments does that include?
Sunny: Drums, keys, guitars, bass. The only instruments that I do not play are specialty instruments like harmonica and sax.
Bev: In your opinion, what is the best venue that you have played?
Sunny: I would say Timbers Bar and Grille in Redmond, Oregon. That is usually pretty hype.
Bev: Is it because of the crowd or is it because of the sound of the venue that makes it your favorite?
Sunny: I base it on the crowd. I mean, they always seem ready to party.
Bev: Do you find that you have a certain age group or if it is male or female, what type of followers do you think like your music the most?
Sunny: It seems to be anything between sixteen to fifty, like kids who come with their parents to older people of no specific age range.
Bev: What about when you sit down to write, are you aiming for a specific audience type or is it simply whatever comes to mind regardless of age or genre.
Sonny: No, I like to get really uninhibited. It is almost like I have a big party going on and be real natural.
Bev: Where is the strangest place you have every written a song?
Sonny: I do not know about strange, but I like to go to Hooters. I like to go there in an afternoon and kid around with the waitresses and the next thing I know I am messing around on a napkin with a song I just wrote.
Bev: If you do not have a strange place, other than napkins, what is another unusual place you have written words to a song so that you can remember it?
Sonny: A strange thing I do is calling my own voicemail when I am really drunk. When I open it I am trying to decipher a weird melody in there.
Bev: What about all the online social networks? Are you using Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, and so on?
Sunny: Yes, that is right.
Bev: And do you enjoy those or do you find them too invasive?
Sunny: Well, I feel like My Space and Face Book , I am fine with writing whatever, but with Twitter I have to control myself because I like them to see my thoughts.
Bev: When you use Twitter, do you tell every little thing that you do? I just tied my shoe, I am having a steak for dinner, or do you keep it more businesslike? Or do you do a little bit of both?
Sunny: No, it can be all kinds of stuff. What ever hits me at the moment. I will tell them about the game I am watching on TV.
Bev: Sunny, thanks for your time, I have enjoyed getting to know you.
Sunny: Bev, I appreciate your time too and look forward to talking to you again!
For more information on Sunny Ledford visit http://www.sunnyledfurd.com/
Transcribed by Darlene McPherson for Digital Rodeo