Since releasing her debut self-titled EP in 2015, Caitlyn Shadbolt has had a remarkable ride in an industry that, at times, can test any young artist’s commitment and passion for their music.
Not one to rely on ‘lucky breaks’, Caitlyn’s achievements in her short career so far are a real testament to the depth of her talent and to her fondness for the adage, ‘the harder you work the luckier you get.’
Born and raised in Gympie Queensland, 21-year-old Caitlyn grew up immersed in music. At a young age, she taught herself to play guitar and at every opportunity, jammed with her likeminded musician friends, eventually fronting a local school band. It was during these formative years that Caitlyn’s mind was made up. This is what she was meant to do – and it shows.
A naturally gifted singer, accomplished guitar player and dynamic live performer, Caitlyn has all the qualities that form the basis of a credible and long-lasting career in music.
In the few short years since she began composing her own material, Caitlyn has matured way beyond her years as a songwriter, something that is highly evident on her debut album, Songs On My Sleeve.
So, what inspired the album title? As Caitlyn describes it, “I decided to call this album ‘Songs On My Sleeve’ because I have co-written every track. And as a songwriter, each song starts from something personal. When I listen to this album now, it’s like I’m going back through my diary and reading all the memories and moments over the last two years.”
And it helps when some of the world’s most gifted and awarded songsmiths are willing to collaborate with a young artist to create what is a truly stunning collection of songs. Just some of the artists and musicians credited as co-writers include hip hop / R&B, Grammy award winning producer, M-Phazes (Eminem, Daniel Johns and Eskimo Joe); renowned producer John Alaiga (John Mayer, Jason Mraz and Ben Folds Five); country star, Brooke McClymont (The McClymonts); and ex-pat Aussies Kylie Sackley and Phil Barton who between them have had hit songs recorded by the likes of US superstars Alan Jackson,
Leann Rimes and Lee Brice.
And signing on for a powerful duet is Reece Mastin who, apart from winning X Factor in 2011, has had number 1 singles and a double platinum, self-titled album.
While on many levels Songs On My Sleeve is a personal album. With songs about love, friends and relationship breakups, it ultimately delivers some very positive messages.
Caitlyn herself agrees, “Overall I’m a pretty positive person, so if I’m writing a break up song it generally has underlying strength and quite often, cheekiness.”
My Break Up Anthem is the opening track and the first single to be lifted off the album. “I wrote ‘My Break Up Anthem’ with a good friend, Jared Porter. I wanted to write something powerful for women and promote confidence and independence. When I finished the song, I had no idea what to call it. I was like okay what is this song? It’s a break up anthem. It’s MY break up anthem.”
While Caitlyn takes her music very seriously, she always makes sure that it fits with her sense of fun and true Aussie sense of humour. “Recording this album was great in so many ways. I discovered more about myself. I learnt that I love to shout ‘hey’ in any circumstance of a song and that no matter how hard I try, my Aussie accent will stick with me forever. And I like it that way.”
While the songs are without a doubt the centrepiece of the album, the true star of Songs On My Sleeve is Caitlyn’s voice which over time has evolved to become a world-class ‘instrument.’
Songs On My Sleeve is set to surprise and delight and will herald the arrival of one of the world’s future superstars. Caitlyn Shadbolt is a rising star in the truest sense!
CAREER ACHIEVEMENTS SO FAR…
- TOP 5 finalist in national television talent show X-Factor in 2014
- July 2015 signs an exclusive recording deal with ABC/Universal Music Australia joining the stable which includes Lee Kernaghan, Beccy Cole, Sara Storer, The Wolfe Brothers and more.
- June 2015 signs an exclusive management agreement with Chandler Music Works
- Debut single ‘Maps Out The Window’ hits #1 on Country iTunes chart – within hours of release!
- Shoot Out The Lights #1 on both Airplay chart and CMC Video Charts
- Self titled EP Top 10 Aria Country Albums chart and the highest selling CD at Gympie Music Muster in 2015.
- Appointed a the Gympie Muster Ambassador 2015 – a role Caitlyn shared with Adam Brand
- Nominated for the Best New Talent Golden Guitar 2016
- Nominated for 3 CMC Awards 2016 (New Talent, Female Artist, Oz Video)
- Combined social media following of 60 000+
- Performed at largest international Country Music festival in southern hemisphere (CMC Rocks)
- Appeared on numerous radio and television shows including The Morning Show & Today Show
- Selected as an inspirational presenter at various schools (Leadership Days)
- Has featured as special guest to a number of major artists including Lee Kernaghan, Taylor Henderson, The Wolfe Brothers, and Jasmine Rae.
- In December 2015 was announced as the winner of the Commercial Radio Australia New Artist to Nashville Scholarship. The award provides Caitlyn with the opportunity to perform at the American Country Music Association’s global artist showcase GlobaLive! at the world’s largest country music festival, the CMA Music Festival in Nashville, Tennessee, June 2016.
- In March 2016 Caitlyn took out the converted award, CMC New Oz Artist of the Year
- In April 2016 Caitlyn flew to Bali to attend an invitational songwriters retreat where she co-wrote with a number of successful artists and songwriters including Stu Chrichton (Kylie Minogue, Delta Goodrem, Guy Sebastian, Elton John), Surahn Sudu (Empire of the Sun), Tushar Apte (Chris Brown), John Alaiga (John Mayer, Jason Mraz, Ben Folds Five.
- June & July saw Caitlyn head to Nashville for the first time where she performed showcases and co-wrote songs for her debut album with some of country music’s finest song-smiths.
- In August Caitlyn was again invited to perform on main stage at the iconic Gympie Music Muster. She also joined an ensemble of stars such as Troy Cassar-Daley, Adam Harvey and Sara Storer in the closing event called ‘Collaboration’.
- In November Caitlyn is again nominated as Best New Talent in the Country Music Awards of Australia (Golden Guitars, Tamworth).
- In November, announced to perform at CMC Rocks 2017 with international artists such as the Dixie Chicks, Little Big Town and Kip Moore.