Paige Rutledge is a bright, cheerful soul in the Canadian country music scene.
Growing up in rural Ontario, country music had a prominent presence in the young artist’s life from the very start. Partial credit can be given to her grandparents, with her grandmother being a big Shania Twain fan– one of Paige’s early influences. When her grandfather fell ill, she would sing songs by Twain & Miley Cyrus for him to cheer him up. When he unfortunately passed, she honoured him by performing the very same songs she used to sing to him at his funeral, in the company of her family and friends. At age 5, she performed her first live concert and by age 9, she was performing regularly at venues or events that would lend her the stage. As she got older, her eagerness to perform and to share her music with the world became her motivating force, as she continued to carve her own path in the industry instead of waiting for opportunity to find her. This lead to her playing in numerous events held by the Country Music Association of Ontario, having her skills as an artist acknowledged by becoming one of the “the top 20 artists in Magna’s Country Hoedown Showdown, and [winning] the emerging artist showcase at Canada’s Largest Ribfest in Burlington, Ontario in September 2019.” (Rutledge). The following year, “Paige was the winner of the preliminary round of The Next Country Music Star in April 2020” (Rutledge). She also released her singles, “Without Me” and “Take me Back to Tiki”.
Once the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March, the music industry was one of the first to shut down in light of the new safety regulations. Taking advantage of the downtime she now had, she reflected on who “Paige Ruthledge” was as an artist. As she explains, “Some questions I asked myself are: What do I want to say? Who is my audience? What is my sound? Reflecting on these questions really helped me pinpoint who I am and who I want to be as an artist.” (Rutledge). The result? Her latest single, “Broken Record.”
Written by Emma-Lee & Karen Kosowski, Kira Isabella, Broken Record speaks to an off-and-on couple who aren’t meant to be but keep falling back into old patterns instead of making a clean break from one another. This story resonated with Paige, as she shares, “ While I didn’t write this one, it was reflective of my life. I found so much inspiration in someone else’s words.” (Rutledge). Taking it to the studio, she then put her own twist on the song. The end result is an upbeat, pop-country tune with a catchy melody that will easily get stuck in your head. A musical sound that is reflective of the new stylistic direction Paige is taking with her music. As she confesses, “I’m excited to see where this song goes and this new sound takes me. Hopefully, it will help me reach new listeners.” (Rutledge).
Also an avid songwriter, Rutledge welcomes us into her creative process by sharing her ideal setting to write. “When I’m home, I set up my room. I set up cacti and my candles and plugin in my Xmas lights. It creates a very bright, nice place to write. When I’m at my cottage, the tiki bar is my favourite place to sit. It looks over the water. Looking at nature is so inspiring and peaceful- just so real. It really puts you in the ‘here and now’ setting.” (Rutledge). In addition, Paige frequently co-writes with many of Canada’s promising talents in the country music industry. As she shares, “I co-write a lot! I have 1-2 different co-writes per week. Going in writing for other people. The more people you write with, the more you grow. You pick up on different strengths.” (Rutledge). As she continues, “I’ve only had wonderful experiences with every session, and they are all so productive. There’s always something positive to take away from every write, including some great tunes!” (Rutledge).
Moving forward in 2021, Paige plans to share more new music with her fans and to continue to be true to herself as both a person and an artist. She also looks forward to getting back to performing regularly at events across Ontario this summer. Stay tuned for what’s next for this rising artist.
Listen to “Broken Record” now:
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Rutledge, Paige. Interview. Conducted by Kyla Pearson, Apr 30 2021.
Unknown.“Featured: Country artist Paige Rutledge”. Photo courtesy of Paige Rutledge. Accessed Apr 30 2021.
Unknown.“Official cover art for Paige Rutledge’s latest single, ‘Broken Record’ ”. Photo courtesy of Paige Rutledge. Accessed Apr 30 2021.