Alana Springsteen hasn't been around long, but she's been around long enough to know a great song idea can come from anywhere. "Slow Down," one of two new songs premiering exclusively on Taste of Country on Thursday (May 2), was inspired by a bad driver.

“There’s a lot of bad drivers in Nashville, thank God," the 18-year-old Virginia Beach, Va. native says, laughing. Co-writer Ben Foster came to their songwriting session saying how he'd just been cut off in traffic and yelled "Slow down!" at the other driver. Springsteen took it in and suggested they write just that.

The song isn't an ode road rage or distracted motorists. It's an easy love song that finds a girl wrapped up in a moment she's not sure she can — or should — tap the breaks on.

“I just love capturing those first love feelings," Springsteen says of the pop-friendly country song. "The first time you meet somebody and you’re like, oh my gosh, this is special."

Springsteen's family moved her and her siblings to Nashville about four years ago so she could chase her dream. Before that, she did what young artists do in towns like Virginia Beach — bedroom songwriting sessions, dedicated guitar lessons, local National Anthems and quarterly trips to Music City to meet people. Soon she was writing with local writers, and as a teenager she signed a publishing deal which led to better co-writes and opportunities to figure out who she is as an artist.

Last November Springsteen signed with Warehouse West, and along with producer Luke Wooten, she's been working tirelessly on three different EPs, all slated for 2019. The first will come in waves, with two songs ("The Best Thing" and "Slow Down") released digitally on Friday (May 3), a third dropping on May 24 and two more on June 7. Already a familiar local performer, the recordings will establish her as a singer and songwriter — something that's very important to her.

“I feel like they kind of went hand in hand for me. If it makes any sense, I wouldn’t be a songwriter if I wasn’t an artist, and I wouldn’t be an artist if I wasn’t a songwriter. I feel like having my own stories and being able to connect on a personal level is huge for me as an artist," she says.

"The Best Thing" is the second song fans can hear now, and together they showcase a singer with pop sensibilities who's dedicated to country music. There's a big hole on country radio for a female who can sing about young love with loads of sincerity and little drama or provocation. Springsteen's authenticity makes her a strong candidate to fill it.

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