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Pey­ton Stilling is the kind of teen that will make you for­get she is one. At 17, this witty young woman al­ready has the con­fi­dence and ma­tu­rity, as well as an im­pres­sive pro­fes­sion­al­ism on stage that teenagers of­ten lack dur­ing those awk­ward high school years.

At 15, Pey­ton was per­form­ing shows at lo­cal es­tab­lish­ments and since then she has honed a clear, pow­er­ful voice that seam­lessly and ef­fort­lessly projects a soul­ful con­tem­po­rary Jazz feel. From singing to play­ing the gui­tar, Pey­ton is a Singer-Song­writer with a mis­sion.

In­flu­enced by singer-song­writ­ers like John Mayor but also “peo­ple who re­ally paved the way of mu­sic” like No­rah Jones and Ca­role King, Pey­ton says” she thinks of Tori Kelly be­cause she is such a huge inspiration to my mu­sic. She wrote and pro­duced her own mu­sic and never gave up on her­self. She shows me what its like to be­lieve in my mu­sic and my­self.

Pey­ton shines most as a singer­song­writer, where sim­ple in­stru­men­tal ar­range­ments leave room for heart­felt lyrics and a warm voice that gets un­der your skin. She be­lieves there has to be an in be­tween to re­ally come out with a great song. A good song she be­lieves should have a good mes­sage.

“Mu­sic has been such a bless­ing in my life in ways I cant even de­scribe,” she says. “It’s given me an out­let to ex­press my emo­tions, be my­self, and have con­fi­dence. Also mu­sic gives me the op­por­tu­nity to write and per­form orig­i­nal mu­sic that truly con­nects with oth­ers. Through mu­sic I have also been able to raise money for a non-profit or­ga­ni­za­tion that helps give re­lief to fam­i­lies with spe­cial needs kids. She con­tin­ues. Pey­ton dreams big but keeps her­self grounded. For some­one who is still at­tend­ing high school and de­cided to make mu­sic her ca­reer only few years ago, she is sur­pris­ingly prag­matic about the re­al­ity of a busi­ness that can be as shal­low as it is greedy.

“I just want to do mu­sic,” she says. “Be­ing in the mu­sic in­dus­try it can be very over­whelm­ing and I know from ex­pe­ri­ence that it’s easy to start com­par­ing your­self to other artists. What I have learned is that the mu­sic in­dus­try is so di­verse and mu­sic is so sub­jec­tive and that the only way to suc­ceed is through hard work and a be­liev­ing in your­self and the mu­sic you are cre­at­ing.”

In­spired by her high school friends, Pey­ton loves to write songs ei­ther about her life or her friend’s life. I like to write songs that lots of peo­ple can re­late too. Pey­ton be­longs to a new gen­er­a­tion of Anti-Mi­ley Cyrus singers that are young, brainy and in­de­pen­dent.

PN: How im­por­tant is im­age?

Pey­ton: Im­age is so im­por­tant in the mu­sic in­dus­try. I have re­ally made a brand for my­self that is unique to me and stays true to who I am and what I rep­re­sent as an artist.

PN: What is a typ­i­cal day/week like for you?

Pey­ton: A typ­i­cal day is me go­ing to school and then com­ing home do­ing home­work, prac­tic­ing my mu­sic, and then nor­mally I have mu­sic lessons of some kind or I have a show.

PN: How would you de­scribe your per­fect day?

Pey­ton: My per­fect day would in­clude go­ing to eat break­fast at my fa­vorite restau­rant, Cof­fee House Cafe, and go­ing shop­ping with my friends. Then at night play­ing a show would be the per­fect end to

my per­fect day.

PN: What would your friends say they ap­pre­ci­ate the most about you?

Pey­ton: I am a very good lis­tener and very in­ten­tional with all my friend­ships.

PN: If you could blink your eyes and be in a fa­vorite place right now, where would that place be?

Pey­ton: I would want to be on the beach (specif­i­cally Hawaii but any beach would do)

PN: What do you like to do out­side of mu­sic that con­trib­utes to their mu­si­cal­ity; in essence, a hobby that they turn to in or­der to re­ju­ve­nate their cre­ativ­ity.

Pey­ton: Out­side of mu­sic I love to do crafts. I ab­so­lutely love get­ting on Pinterest and find­ing some fun craft or project to do.

PN: What has been your biggest chal­lenge and have you been able to over­come that chal­lenge? If so, how?

Pey­ton: My biggest chal­lenge was when my mom was di­ag­nosed with Breast Can­cer. It was hard for me to fathom life with out my mom and re­ally made me ques­tion my faith. My mom is now 6 years in re­mis­sion and I am so proud of her. Dur­ing this time I learned a lot about my­self and re­ally grew in my faith. I am so thank­ful for her in my life and I don’t think I would have be­come the per­son I am to­day with­out that very dif­fi­cult chal­lenge.

PN: Do you have a record la­bel? Are you a mem­ber of any mu­sic or­ga­ni­za­tions?

Pey­ton: I am not a part of any record la­bel or mu­sic or­ga­ni­za­tion. But hope­fully re­ally soon

PN: How can fans-to-be gain ac­cess to your mu­sic? Do you have a web­site with sam­ple songs

Pey­ton: Fans can gain ac­cess to me at my web­site: Pey­ton­still­

PN: Is there any­one you’d like to ac­knowl­edge for of­fer­ing fi­nan­cial or emo­tional sup­port.

Pey­ton: I would love to thank my par­ents for be­liev­ing in me and my mu­sic. I also want to thank my friends for be­ing so sup­port­ive and for com­ing to all of my shows. Also huge thanks to Jayne Ly­brand and Bri­anna Ruelas for push­ing me vo­cally and in­spir­ing me. Lastly big thanks to Brad Barnes for push­ing me to strive to be a bet­ter gui­tar player.

PN: Who were you, or would you be ner­vous to meet?

Pey­ton: If I were to meet Tori Kelly or No­rah Jones I would prob­a­bly hy­per­ven­ti­late [laughs]

PN: Where would you like to find your­self in ten years?

Pey­ton: I would like to see my­self on tour, ver­i­fied on so­cial me­dia, and signed to a record la­bel.

“Ev­ery­day I strive to work harder and push my­self to be the best per­son I can be. I want my mu­sic to re­flect my be­liefs and val­ues,” she says. “I also want it to in­spire oth­ers go­ing through the same sit­u­a­tions or feel­ings. Her goals in mu­sic are to re­lease an EP (hope­fully soon), to con­tinue rais­ing money for non-profit or­ga­ni­za­tions, and to go on tour.

Say what you will about the ef­fect that the in­ter­net (more specif­i­cally, so­cial me­dia) has had on our ev­ery­day lives, but as a tool of dis­cov­ery, it’s chang­ing lives ev­ery day. Es­pe­cially for mu­si­cians who don’t hail from hub cities with built-in net­works of in­dus­try per­son­nel, a sim­ple Sound cloud ac­count can end up be­ing a golden ticket. Check out one of Pey­ton’s new­est songs, I prom­ise you will just fall in love with her. https://pey­ton­still­ track/1039938/the-rain?fea­ture_ id=242100

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