@LoveOutLoudWho are 2Steel Girls? Allison and Krystal Steel are a mother-daughter country duo who made it onto Season 3 of The Voice. They auditioned with Carrie Underwood's "Before He Cheats" and turned the chairs of coaches Cee Lo Green and Blake Shelton. They followed their hearts and chose Blake Shelton, who became their mentor and their coach. 2 Steel Girls made it all the way to the Battle Rounds, where they competed "Sin Wagon'"against fellow Team Blake contestant Gracia Harrison.
Although they didn't progress further in the competition, these women have been working incredibly hard ever since their time on The Voice. I got a chance to speak with Krystal Steel today to learn more about who they are, their sound, and their future.
Let's go back to the beginning. Can you tell us how you formed the duo (2Steel Girls)?
Krystal:Our family is really musical, going back four or five generations, so everyone has always done music in our family. When I was a kid my mom (Allison Steel) sang at church and my dad played drums, and about three years ago that was something they no longer wanted to do. So we decided that we (Krystal and Allison) had been singing together for awhile, so why not try country music? It's something that we always loved and we decided that since we lived in Nashville, we should just go for it. And we did! It's always been a dream of ours to do music full-time professionally, and we pursued it as a family together. It's taken off a lot more quickly than we thought it would!
2Steel Girls performed at Nashville's legendary Bluebird Cafe in 2011. What was that like?We did! It was our very first show, It was a really cool experience, We were really nervous. We actually had to audition for that show, and it was for 'Chick Singer's Night'. So we auditioned and they told us we could be in the show. We had to have like 5 songs. We had our songs that we had written, and it was our first time performing in front of anyone. We were kind of terrified, but we did it! It got us a start and we just went on from there. It's been a learning experience. We do a lot of things ourselves, almost everything we do ourselves right now. We've gone from knowing nothing about the music industry to learning more every day about it.
I know from there 2Steel Girls auditioned for The Voice (I am a huge fan of the show). What was your experience like on the show,
and what was it like to work with Blake Shelton?It was really great for us! Before we went out for the Voice we had only performed out a few times. Looking back I tell my mom (Allison) that we put WAY too much pressure on ourselves, like it was the end all of our career. We had only just got started. If we did it now, we would have looked at it more like an opportunity for great exposure, and if it works it does, if not, that would be cool too. We went out there and the whole production staff, from the person who makes the coffee to the producer of the show, are some of the nicest people that you will meet. They treat everyone on The Voice really exceptionally well, so we thought that was really cool after hearing horror stories about other singing shows. So we were really honored to be there, and we learned a lot just being out there on the show. Blake is awesome. He is just like, you meet him and you were off somewhere not knowing who Blake Shelton was, I don't think you'd ever guess that he is who he is. He is just so normal, you talk to him and he doesn't have an ego or anything. It's like you're talking to your uncle or your brother. You feel like you've known him your whole life. He's funny and he cussesa lot. He's very down to earth, very normal.
After The Voice, you both went back to Nashville to record the Trainwreck EP?We came back and we decided that we really needed to put out some music. We had only released one single before we went on The Voice, just a song that I (Krystal) had written, so we were putting together some music. In the middle of it, before we even really got started, we had one of our fans that we had never met from Connecticut, and saw on Facebook how The Pistol Annie's performed on The Today Show. She's like "it would be really cool to be able to do that one day." And we were thinking maybe 5 years from now maybe, or later on down the line. That fan, her name is Sandra, said 'Do you guys mind if I start a Facebook page to try and get you on The Today Show?' And we were all 'Yes you can!' At the time we were thinking in our heads that it wasn't going to happen, but within the first week over a 1000 people liked that page. And not only were they liking it, they were going to The Today Show page on Facebook and telling them that they wanted to see us perform, emailing them. By the third week she had started that page, the producers of The Today Show actually emailed us and asked us to come out and perform on their Mother's Day episode. And we got to do that which was really awesome! We released our first single 'Trainwreck' on The Today Show with Kathy Lee and Hoda. And we never thought that would ever happen! So we did that, released that single and for that album we released a Kickstarter and got funded 150%. We got so much support from our fans, with our music and everything we do, they support us even more than we could ever ask for. We have really great people behind us and we're really thankful.
I was checking out the EP and wanted to tell you both that I really like "My Mistakes" and "Forward"!Thank you! Those are ones that we actually wrote on our own and didn't cowrite those with anyone.
Can you tell us about the new Kickstarter for the next 2Steels Girl album?We are funding everything on our own, which can be very expensive, which gets put back into our music. We are working with Bernard Porter, and he kind of mentored us. He was instrumental to signing Jason Aldean to Broken Bow (Records). He was the one who told us that we should do a Kickstarter again. This next album we are really excited about through Bernard Porter, and their artist development company PEG Nashville. Everything from our speaking, to our interviews, to our stage performance, our songwriting, you name it, as artists we have been working on it. Through Bernard we met Trey Bruce, he's awesome and has worked for tons of record labels. He's an Emmy award winning producer and songwriter. we have the opportunity to have a meeting with Trey, to show him who we were and the sound that we want to stick with. He wants to produce our album so we're really excited about it! We've got this whole team of people behind us now and to have the connections that we on our own don't necessarily have. We just feel like this is it. We truly believe that everything that's happened for us from the very beginning is for a reason. We believe things will work out how they're supposed to. We were really think that it was we're supposed to do and our plan is to have this album done, to have a release, a whole new website and everything. Bernard and Trey are going to help us pitch ourselves to the record labels which we are really excited about.
What are some of your biggest music influences?We have a lot of different influences, since there is a few of us. We are technically 2Steel Girls but my dad plays drums with us and has since we started, and my brother plays guitars with us. so we have a wide array of influences. I know my mom (Allison Steel) loves Willie Nelson since she was a kid. Elvis and things like that. My brother is really into alternative music like Coheed and Cambria, he listens to all the stuff I don't listen to. He really loves jam band music, my dad loves 80's rock, and I love just old school country music and bluesy stuff. So we get our influence from just about everywhere. I don't think there's one type of music between all 4 of us that someone doesn't like. We're really diverse, which where we come from in Ohio. We lived in Nashville for about 13/14 years but we grew up in Southern Ohio in the Appalachia area. We're from from an old coal town that has maybe 6000 people or less in it, you know, we're pretty country.That sound from the area that we're from, like southern rock, is always coming out in our music. So that's what we're really gravitating more toward on the next album. We just really want to be true to who we are. We know what's popular and what's hitting on the radio right now. What's current now isn't going to be there forever. We're just going to make an album of who we are, and if people love it they're going to get behind it.
Any message to your fans?Thank you for always supporting us and getting behind us. There are days when it's hard for us trying to do everything, and them sending emails. We're human and we're not perfect. There are times when we want to give up, and just having the support of people we know online, that we've never met or don't really know, it's really helped us. They'll say 'you guys have really helped me through this situation' and that really pushes us to keep going and following our dreams. Go for your dreams! It's been incredible. People that we've never even met outside this country have been supporting us, our Kickstarter, that means a lot. We've been blessed to have awesome fans and we couldn't thank them enough for how great they've been to us. 2Steel Girls' Kickstarter ends on July 21st. Click HERE to check it out and donate! Keep Up With PopWrapped On The Web!