Fast and Fun: The Making of ‘Backseat Driver’ [Watch]
In order to become a successful Nashville songwriter, you have to be able to work fast under pressure. Three #LetTheGirlsPlay artists showed that they're up for the challenge during a YouTube popup event recently.
Trannie Stevens, Tiera and Mignon Grabois were one of five sets of writers paired at random for a Song Suffragettes event that challenged the groups of collaborators to write a complete song in just three hours, which is how most Music City collaborations work. They started off a little bit ahead of the game, as Stevens and Grabois already had an idea for an up-tempo song called "Backseat Driver." They already had a little bit of melody, and Tiera immediately jumped right in when Grabois explained the concept to her.
"It's best to come in with an idea that's fully thought out, because you don't want to spend an hour just talking about, 'What should we write about?'" Grabois says in this "making of" video. "I feel like that was really easy this time, because we all agreed on one idea, and all had a clear mind about it."
From there it was just getting the lyrics sorted out, and for Tiera it was particularly interesting because it was only her third time co-writing. She contributed one of the song's pivotal lines, and the resulting song is both fun and a little bit lyrically suggestive: "Making rear view memories / Tonight I'm gonna let you be backseat driver / Backseat driving me crazy."
The ladies recorded the song right after the writing session in front of a live audience. They came up with an extremely catchy wordless vocal hook to open the track, and contributed beautiful harmonies for a seemingly ready-for-radio song that wouldn't be at all out of place with hits we hear every day. Check out the writing process in the clip above, and hear the finished product below.
Hear Trannie, Tiera and Mignon Sing "Backseat Driver"