We sat down with PremiumBeat Signature Series artist Bridget Barkan to learn a little bit about her as an actress, musician, and more.
As an actress and singer, PremiumBeat artist Bridget Barkan tells stories. Her incredible combination of pop hits and emotional anthems brings people together to share a mutual love of music and community. As the latest PremiumBeat Signature Series artist, we wanted to learn more about her music, her journey into the arts, growing up in New York, and where she’s going next. For a behind-the-scenes look into the art world of Bridget Barkan, read on to discover the story behind her voice.
When you listen to Bridget Barkan’s collection of royalty-free music on PremiumBeat, it’s clear that she’s a multifaceted artist who can be described in a multitude of ways. Her tracks are fun, yet fierce. Emotional, yet catchy. Moving seamlessly between electric anthems to chill ballads, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a song that doesn’t speak to you.
How would you describe yourself to someone you’ve just met?
I’m always looking to peel back the layers and go deeper.
As an artist, do you have a word that best describes yourself?
You were born and raised in New York. Did that influence your decision to pursue a career in the arts?
I think I came out of the womb singing, but I was actually discovered in the playground by a talent manager, so I started professionally really early in the game. In some ways, I was born into it. But, I always loved the arts. Times Square was just around the corner from my house growing up. Theater, film, street musicians — all of that raised me.
With that in mind, can you see yourself anywhere but New York?
When I was a teenager, I swore I’d live here forever. But, as I’ve gotten older, I find the periods of time I spent living outside of the city really opened up my creativity. Parts of California or upstate in nature… I also dream of having a home back in Ireland where my family is from.
Ireland would be the dream. As you’ve noted, you’re a bit of a chameleon. As an accomplished actress, singer, comedian, storyteller, is there a part of your career that you favor?
It’s definitely a combination. I think the most exciting thing for me is when I get to do it all in one. Like perform a character, tell a story, and then sing a song I wrote inspired by that. It all encompasses a unique moment in time, or a lesson or profound discovery.
That’s really cool. What are your biggest inspirations to yourself as an artist?
Human existence, purely. Oh, and magic, transformation, and alchemy.
I love that. How important is personal style to you as a performer, and how did you develop that style?
I think you spend a lot of your early years emulating artists you love, and eventually (or hopefully) they all start to mix together into a hodgepodge that becomes your own take on things.
I spent a lot of years singing or trying to be what people thought I was. Through different creative experiences, I wore different hats and began to develop (and still am developing) my own sound. Limitations can lead to brilliance. I used to strive for that, and now I focus purely on the emotion of the music and what sound is needed to express that.
That’s a beautiful way of looking at it. Let’s say we’ve never heard your (incredible) music. How would you describe it?
A 1970s soulful musical performed by a 90s girl group, in a one-woman show.
That’s the most creative answer to that question I’ve ever heard. So, how did you find PremiumBeat? What brought you to royalty-free music?
I’m thankful to know amazing people, like David Lizmi (PremiumBeat Producer), who I met through friends and fellow artists Xavier and Bright Light Bright Light. I love writing songs and the collaborations I’ve done with other artists at PremiumBeat.
I’m a junkie for the muse, and getting a request to create a song with this vibe or that vibe really gets my juices flowing. I can’t wait to get hit with a new song and have a chance to share it and make bread and break bread with good people. I feel very blessed.
Very cool! Do you have a favorite track on PremiumBeat?
It would have to be Brave Young Soul. I wrote it in about ten minutes, and it just flowed and the production by Isaac Carpenter was just perfect.
I love that track, it’s one of my favorites as well. How was your experience filming your Signature Series?
It was so much fun to have the folks come down and follow me around in my life. When people get to witness your world, it makes you see it from the outside for a second, and I really got to appreciate the life that I have.
Especially looking back on the video, there are a few moments with my Dad, who just passed away this May during quarantine. So, I feel like the video is even more special to me. I am who I am because of my father, Mark Barkan. He was a Brill building songwriter, as well as my mentor as a creative and my biggest fan. So, I’m here with you all because of him.
Sounds like it was an emotional experience, and we’re glad we could be a small part of your journey with your father. Do you have anything exciting coming up next?
I’ve been creating some really fun country bluegrass-inspired pop tunes with my longtime friend and collaborate Phinestro. I’m planning on releasing a lot of new music with him in 2020 — different EPs in different genres. I’m also a teaching artist at Carnegie Hall, creating online songwriting workshops for the young artists of New York City.
What an awesome project! Any advice for future artists looking to pursue their career in the arts professionally, as either actors or musicians, or both?
My advice is… say yes to collaborations. Be humble and learn, experiment, and put expression over perfection. Keep saying yes and then, at some point, you’ll know when it’s time to say no to certain projects, so you can focus on what your heart really wants or what your heart really needs.
I love that. Any last words before we say see you later?
Music is healing when we make it, when we listen, and when we share it. And, the people need it. The world needs artists. Support us. Keep it in schools. Inspire the youth to be song keepers. It’s sacred work.
Discover more of Bridget Barkan’s incredible royalty-free music.
All images provided by Bridget Barkan.
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