In 2004 Leigh Nash bottomed out. It wasn't due to any of the stereotypical rock dalliances involving substance abuse or lavish spending. Instead, Nash found herself face to face with the dark underbelly of the protestant work ethic when giving and giving doesn't equal getting what you always imagined.
Sixpence None the Richer, the band she had been a member of for nearly half of her life, thirteen years all told, was contemplating calling it quits. Nash and high school mate Matt Slocum had formed the group as teenagers, touring in sedans and cramped vans, slowly building a career.
In spite of the colossal success the band enjoyed with ubiquitous pop singles like "Kiss Me"and "There She Goes", the group was continually plagued by the business woes of the trade and finally decided to split ways amicably. Disoriented by this major change, Nash and her husband left their Nashville home of ten years and moved to Los Angeles.
"It was a major life change for me because I had been with Sixpence since I was fourteen. I was 27 at the time, and I didn't know what I was going to do. So, I started writing songs," says the pixie-like Nash, seated on her back porch over Easter weekend.
While in L.A.,Leigh Nash penned a batch of songs that would eventually comprise her first solo record, Blue on Blue, a sweetly understated collection of musings on love and motherhood that came out August 15th 2006 on One Son Records, Nash's own imprint label through Nettwerk Productions.
"I knew I wanted to do a record on my own - I always knew I wanted to do that if the band were to break up. But then we actually did break up, and I hadn't necessarily seen that coming when it did", recalls Nash.
A few months after Sixpence None the Richer parted ways, Leigh Nash welcomed her son Henry into the world, along with a new sense of creative vitality. Nash explains that her songs were not intentionally centered on any one concept, but admits her newfound maternity was a source of inspiration.
"Motherhood came pretty fast, and I started writing a ton about Henry. I just found that there was a much deeper well within me than there had been before. This was probably because it was such an emotional process with the band breaking up and all the other things happening at once."
Leigh Nash moved back to Music City and into a new community of musicians a recently formed rock collective called Movement Nashville. The group hopes to dispel the myth that musically Nashville is limited to Country or Christian.
Leigh Nash has two distinct poles of inspiration: her work with Sixpence in the Christian music sphere and her childhood fascination with older female country artists like Tanya Tucker, Loretta Lynn and Patsy Cline. In many ways Blue on Blue emanates squarely between those two regions without being pulled down by any of the inbred trappings of the genres. Leigh Nash's faith informs her songwriting in equal measure as her affinity for country music.
"I started singing country music and learning old country songs on the guitar when I was twelve. I was really, really shy but just had this desire to get on stage and started calling clubs myself to ask if I could come down and sing," says Nash, "who grew up in the southern Texas town of New Braunfels."
With Sixpence None The Richer reforming in 2009, and some solid touring with both her solo career and as Sixpence, Leigh Nash is prepped to return to music even though she never really left.
Listen to Leigh Nash Here
|Blue on Blue||2006||One Son Records|
|My Idea Of Heaven EP||2006||One Son Records|
|My Idea of Heaven (Remixed EP)||2006||One Son Records|
|Wishing For This||2006||One Son Records|
|Remixed 2 EP||2006||One Son Records|
|Hymns & Sacred Songs||2011||Kingsway Music|