Proud Windsor, ON native, Kelsi Mayne is a Canadian Country Music singer-songwriter, 2016 FACTOR grant recipient, and Top 7 Finalist in the upcoming Boots and Hearts Emerging Artist Showcase. With an award-winning journalist as father and an acclaimed sculptor/muralist as a mother, Kelsi was constantly surrounded and influenced by a world of art. She developed her performing skills early on, competing on the Canada-U.S. Highland Dancing circuit. Soon she made moves to become a vocalist and began to achieve success in several talent competitions – once winning the opportunity to open for the Neverending White Lights when she was just 16 years old.
While in university, Kelsi was hired as a house singer at a country bar. For three nights a week over the next two years, patrons would pile in to catch her memorable performances on top of bars, barrels, speakers and even occasionally the mechanical bull. This reinforced her love of country music and affinity for the stage. After earning her nursing degree as an Academic All-Canadian and winning several provincial and national honours in track and field, Kelsi decided to move to Toronto to focus on her singing career.
Having added guitar to her skills, Kelsi developed a love for songwriting. She has performed all over Ontario and formed a self-titled 5-piece band. Kelsi has collaborated with some of Canada’s top industry names including Ryan Stewart (Carly Rae Jepsen, Hedley), David Genn (54-40, Hedley), Jay Allan (Johnny Reid, Doc Walker), Matthew Piché (instrumentalist/producer, 2x Juno nominee), and Eric Ethridge to name a few.
A natural on stage, and now camera — as soon to be revealed in the River Town Saints’ new music video ‘Cherry Bomb’— Kelsi has proven this to be a very promising year and will continue to make her mark on the Canadian Country Music scene.
7 Questions with Kelsi Mayne
#1: Being selected as a finalist for Boots and Hearts Emerging Artist is a big deal. One of the 7 of you will perform on the Main Stage at Boots and Hearts this summer. Describe the moment you found out you made it? How did they contact you? Where were you? and has it sunk in yet?
I was in the middle of the Apple Store and I hopped on their wifi. An email loaded that said the finalists have been chosen and I had to read it three times over until I truly believed they were speaking about me. Then I did my best not to scream in the middle of the store and bear hug the Apple genius helping me! It probably won’t fully sink in until I’m waiting backstage to go on.
#2: Every artist I’ve spoken to has a story about how / when they decided to pursue music as a career. Describe the moment that you knew that music was the path for you and what inspired you to take that path.
I was in nursing school and working one night at my part time job as a “bevertainer” at the local country bar. Just after I stepped off of the stage, a stranger approached me and said, “what is someone like you doing here?” I initially took offense because I love my hometown. But he later explained, “you need to get out and take this to the big city.”
#3: What’s your all-time favourite movie?
Pirates of the Caribbean
#4: Your ideal brain food?
Peanut butter and Bananas! Have it every morning in my oatmeal or yogurt!
#5: If you could see any artist in concert, who would you see (living or dead)?
Michael Jackson (who happened to die on my birthday #worstbirthdayever)
#6: Name a fictional character most like you?
JEAN GREY! Haha I may have a slight obsession
#7: Why should you be chosen as the 2016 Boots and Hearts Emerging Artist Showcase winner?
Winning Boots & Hearts would help me achieve my goal of lending a fresh approach to country music. I feel a deep connection the institution of country music, it’s founded on the values I was raised on, and I feel compelled to help contribute to it.
To vote for Kelsi visit http://bootsandhearts.com/showcase/