Country Living Fair coming to Lebanon

Angie Mayes • Updated Apr 8, 2017 at 9:00 AM

Twenty-two-year-old country singer Nora Collins is making her way in Nashville’s country music business, and she will appear on stage in Lebanon in April as part of that journey.

The Milwaukee, Wisc.-native moved to Nashville in April 2016 and was able to sign a publishing and artist development deal with MV2 Entertainment. That deal allowed her to move to Nashville. 

Collins has been writing songs and performing since she was 14-years-old, so she’s a seasoned veteran in the writing and performing sides of the business.

“I’m still pretty new here [in Nashville], but I feel like I’m learning a lot and writing a lot of great songs,” she said. 

She added she’s always been drawn to country music because “I love story songs and in country music, every song tells a story.” She considers Shania Twain, Miranda Lambert and the late Patsy Cline as her musical influences.

That love of Cline’s music allowed Collins to venture into traditional country. 

“I love traditional country a lot,” she added. “I think people would be surprised that in Wisconsin, people love that style of country music more so than this more modern stuff. I can appreciate both and I love what’s on the radio too.”

She credits her “wonderful parents and the fact that I’m a hard worker,” is a key to her success so far. 

“I know what I want to do and I’m going to take the steps I need to to achieve the goals I have,” Collins said. 

For five years, she played an average of 200 shows a year, opening for artists including Ronnie Milsap, Kelsea Ballerini, Maren Morris, Ashley Monroe, Josh Turner, David Nail, Raelynn, Sawyer Brown, Cassadee Pope, Mo Pitney, Clare Dunn, American Idol Winner Lee DeWyze, Sixpence None the Richer and Katie Armiger.

“Since I moved to Nashville, I’m been focusing on who I am as an artist, so I’ve cut that number back, but I’m still playing shows such as the Country Living Fair (in Lebanon, April 21),” she said. 

Collins has also playing at a gala in Wisconsin, as well as The Listening Room in Nashville (May 8). She recently played the infamous room, The Bluebird in Nashville.  She said of the places she plays are in Wisconsin, “because that is where I have a following and the people that book those venues know me very well because I’ve been playing there for so long.” 

She said she enjoys playing in Nashville at various venues. 

“I’m going to Key West this year,” Collins said. “I enjoy playing different places.”

As a songwriter who writes both lyrics and music, she said that she tries “to draw from my own experiences in my songwriting because I know if I’m going through something then someone else is too and they can connect to that.”

Right now, she said “being a 22-year-old and being out on my own for the first time, there’s a lot of self-realization in the themes. I am learning a lot about myself. 

Collins released four CDs while living in Wisconsin. Once she became a part of MV2’s roster, they released a self-titled EP last September.

“I’m so proud of it,” she said. “It’s a huge step up from the projects I did before in Wisconsin.”

Country Music Television took the video for her first single, “Recover,” and made it a part of their Artist Discovery campaign.

“I feel like it’s a big step forward from everything I’ve done in my past,” Collins noted. “The song is about being love drunk. It’s about that feeling when you wake up in the morning…when you wake up and have him in your head and you’re sleepy and trying to be cute.”

She’s performing at the Country Living Fair on April 21 at 4 p.m. Country Living will be streaming the show live on Facebook. She will perform all original songs during the show.

“I’m very excitied to check out the country living fair,” Collins said. “Country Living has a lot of (do-it-yourself) projects. I have my first apartment. I have been living there for a year and haven’t done much to it because I didn’t know how long I was going to be here. Now I’m going to be here for a while and I’m excited to check out all of the ideas they have.”

Collins said she’s “very proud of what I’ve done so far,” she said. “I’d like it to go faster. I’m working hard and I feel very good about what I’ve accomplished, but I’m always ready to go for the next thing.

For more information about Collins, visit noracollins.com. 

The Country Living Fair will take place April 21-23 at the James E. Ward Agricultural Center, 945 E. Baddour in Lebanon. For more information about the fair, call Stella Show Management Co. at 1-866-500-FAIR or visit stellashows.com. For additional details, visit coutryliving.com/fair. 

The fair will include select regional vendors including JBS Mercantile, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams, Ruffled Linens, Scarlett Scales Antiques, Southern Fried Design Barn and more.

Tickets are $13 for an advance, one-day admission and $16 at the door. Three-day passes are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Admission is free for those 16 and under. An early bird three-day weekend pass is available for $40 and grants early admission at 8:30 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Tickets are on sale now. The regular hours of the fair are Friday, Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The 2017 Country Living Fair in Nashville is sponsored by the 2017 Ford Experience Tour and Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores and is produced by Stella Show Management Company.

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