Nate Botsford is an Indie/Rock artist based in Portland, Oregon. Nate was recently named the winner of the 2015 Project: Aloft Star 2015. We were there to not only seem him perform, but win. Nate is very talented with an ability to capture a crowd as they feel an instant connection to his music.
We recently got a chance to speak with Nate. Check out our interview with him!
upfrontNY: When did you know you wanted to spend your life making music?
Nate Botsford: When I was 4 or 5 I remember making a guitar out of an old fashioned popcorn shaker with rubber bands, that’s how it began. I remember watching my grandpa play piano when I was growing up and I realized that was what I wanted to do.
upfrontNY: Do you remember your first concert experience or a song that made you want to be on stage?
Nate Botsford: I grew up in the church and my first concert was a Christian concert. I remember watching the musicians on stage and seeing the excitement and the energy of the people there. I remember thinking about what it would be like being on stage and to experience that. I was probably 13 or 14.
upfrontNY: Who are your musical inspirations?
Nate Botsford: Ryan Tedder from One Republic, Mumford and Sons and Michael W Smith. I remember listening to him, watching his videos, and researching how he wrote his songs. Also Bob Dylan, both his writing process and his songs.
upfrontNY: Recently you were a part of the Project Aloft Star competition. How did you get involved with that competition?
Nate Botsford: We heard about it and decided to send one of the songs off my album, “Hourglass”. I got the call that I was top 5 and started asking people to start voting and they really came through.
upfrontNY: What was it like meeting with Ingrid Michaelson, who was the mentor?
Nate Botsford: She was very humble. I have always admired her writing and singing. She was very helpful and complimentary of my songs. She gave me a ton of helpful feedback for me as far as where I am, and moving forward.
upfrontNY: What was this the first time you performed in New York?
Nate Botsford: Yeah, it was the first time I had been in New York.
upfrontNY: What did you like most about being in New York City. Not only being there but performing there.
Nate Botsford: It has always been like a fictional place, New York is always like “the city “ from the movies I watched as a kid. I always felt it would be so great to go to New York City. I won the competition, found out I would be playing in New York City, and opening for one of my favorite artists and one of the biggest pop stars in the industry, Ingrid. It was very surreal, the people were awesome, the setting was so intimate, and there was so much energy.
upfrontNY:You won the competition, what is next?
Nate Botsford: I will be flying out to Philadelphia to meet with Billy Mann, one of the judges. He is a producer and I get to spend a day in the studio with him. Next year I start my tour.
upfrontNY: Is there one venue or city that you have always wanted to play?
Nate Botsford: My goal on a big scale is to play Red Rocks. I have a picture that has the stairs leading up to the stage with the artist’s names on the stairs. That has been one of my big inspirations, to put my name on the stairs.
upfrontNY: What do you want people to know about you and what do you want them to feel when listening to your music?
Nate Botsford: One of my goals when I started writing is to be the kind of artist that people can connect with and almost feel like the songs I am singing were written for them.
My songs go from depression and cancer, to losing someone, to love. I want people to come away with more than just watching an artist perform, but feeling like they are able to connect with the song, and find hope in any situation they are in. There is something so magical about what music can do. I have seen it happen in my life.
Head here to learn more about Nate Botsford and stay up to date with him and his music!