Countdown to the CCMA Awards – Q&A with MacKenzie Porter

By: Jenna Melanson

The fun has begun! Country Music Week in Halifax has officially started with a bang, and only 3 days until the biggest event of all, the Canadian Country Music Association Awards. We’ve been your countdown source, featuring Q&A’s with some of the nominees. We started off with Tim Hicks, followed with Madeline Merlo and finally yesterday was High Valley.

Now it’s time for the last 3 days, we’ll be sad when the countdown ends, but it also means we will be in Halifax covering the John Deere Green Carpet & the CCMA Awards, so be sure to keep an eye out on Canadian Beats for that!

Today, let’s talk about one of the Female Artist of the Year nominees, MacKenzie Porter. MacKenzie is from Alberta, and has been a name we’ve been hearing a lot of lately in the country music scene, and we’re sure that isn’t going to stop anytime soon. On top of being nominated for Female Artist of the Year, she is also up for Video of the Year for her single, “If You Ask Me”. Take a moment to read what she had to say!

As a Canadian country musician, being nominated for a CCMA is a huge accomplishment, how did you feel when you found out that you were nominated?

It was 5am when I found out as I was getting ready to go announce other nominees on tv.. I woke up my entire family at 5am to tell them… I was so excited.

There has been a few “CCMA Songwriters’ Series” that took place throughout Nova Scotia, called “The Road To Halifax”, what can you tell us about your songwriting?

Answer: Songwriting is very therapeutic. There are days when lyrics flow out of me and days when nothing flows at all! It takes creativity but you also need to treat it like a job and power through the writes that aren’t “flowing.”  I believe songwriting takes practice just like playing an instrument takes practice.

If you were asked to give a rising Canadian country star some advice, what would that advice be?

Take your time! Don’t feel like you have to release the first few songs that you write. Keep writing and writing and writing because the music and lyrics get stronger the more time you commit to it. Try to surround yourself with a team who truly believes in you. Be prepared to hear the word NO..a lot but let that motivate you to prove the naysayers wrong. HAVE FUN!!! You get to make music as a career.

Canada has a hugely talented Country music scene; can you suggest an up & coming artist that you think we should all be on the lookout for?

Sykamore – she is gonna be HUGE!

One thing that is a major marketing innovation these days is social media, making it possible for artists to connect with their fans by a simple touch of the keyboard. Do you feel this is a vital tool that all artists should partake in?

YES YES YES!!! I think that personal connection is everything. I try very hard to stay active on many social media sites so that I can create real relationships with my fans online. They are the ones who are supporting and helping to build my career so that’s the least I can do.

There are so many great performers taking the stage at the CCMA awards in Halifax, NS, which are you most looking forward to?

Mine! haha! There are so many of my friends performing. I can’t wait to support them all.

What’s up next for you?

I am writing and wrapping up my second album. It will be out next year 🙂

Is there anything you’d like to say to your fans?

Thank you so much for the endless love. I truly can’t explain how amazing it feels to see you singing my lyrics or when I get a message from you saying how one of my songs affected you. I LOVE YOU!!!!


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