TMU Exclusive: ‘Songland’s Casey Cook talks competition series

Macklemore makes appearance tonight on NBC’s Songland

NBC’s TV show Songland opens the door for up-and-coming songwriters as they compete in front of music superstars for the chance to collaborate and have their song selected by one artist each week, giving an inside look at the creative process.

Global megastar, Macklemore will make a guest appearance on tonight’s, episode, as the rapper searches for his next hit song, choosing between the works of four contestants, as they pitch their original material in front music’s most successful and sought-after writers and producers.

Ryan Tedder (Adele, Taylor Swift), Ester Dean (Rihanna, Katy Perry) and Shane McAnally (Kacey Musgraves, Sam Hunt) mentor the contestants as they produce the songwriters to creatively adapt their songs to perfectly fit Macklemore’s style.

Tonight’s episode will feature the young female songwriter, Casey Cook, 25, as a contestant on the show. Cook is a graduate from Belmont University in Nashville, TN. Originally from Rhode Island; Cook grew up doing musical theatre and singing in choirs. When she realized her passion to be an artist she knew she had to become a great songwriter. She began began studying basic piano chords, learned to play by ear. She says after that, the songs and her creativity started flowing out.

Cook writes for genres across the board, with focus on pop and EDM.

She says her writing process differs each time, but her ultimate goal is to evoke emotion through great melodies and lyrics, stopping listeners in their tracks.

“My favorite style is letting the melodies pour out from how I’m feeling in that moment,” says Cook. “The lyrics are subconsciously in the melodies and you find out what you’re saying after; it’s pretty wild”.

Tonight Cook will compete as she presents Macklemore with her song, “Judgments,” which she wrote in collaboration with her friends Cameron, and Norma Jean Martine.

“We wrote it about a date I had the night prior where I just wanted to know all about his story – every detail, every mistake, every scar he had made,” says Cook. “I told him there were no judgments; we’re all a little bit crazy and it makes who we are”.

The song was pitched to labels and managers who “loved it,” but said it just wasn’t for them.

“Fast forward two years later our song ends up being in the running for Songland,” says Cook. “We had no idea it would land in these kinds of hands”.

She says one of the beauties of songwriting is that you never know where the songs will end up.

Cook admits the music industry isn’t always easy to navigate, but with her talent and determination, she hopes baby steps will become big steps, taking her all the way to the top.

Whereas many songwriters work under publishers, or with booking agencies, Cook moved to Los Angeles, CA, but chose to take a different route, doing all of the groundwork herself.

“I’ve done this all on my own through different connections that I’ve made along the way and that’s a pretty cool feeling I think,” says Cook. “I’ve gotten into bigger and better songwriting rooms from my own referrals of other likeminded peers”.

In April 2019, Casey co-wrote “Boundaries” on Eurovision Contest winner Lena Meyer-Landrut’s single. In May 2019 it became official campaign song for Marvel’s X-Men movie, Dark Phoenix in Germany, Switzerland, The Netherlands, and several other European countries.

Cook has had two releases within the past week, “I Wonder,” collaboration with electronic act, West Coast Massive, and “Pieces,” which was an original contender for Songland before ultimately going with a different choice for the show.

Her songs are now available on iTunes, Apple Music, and Spotify.

Find out if Cook’s song is chosen by Macklemore. Tune in and watch Songland, tonight, Wed. Aug 14 on NBC at 9/8C.

Check out Cook’s website and socials for more details.

Songland airs Wednesdays at 9/8c on NBC – upcoming guest recording artists include Old Dominion, Leona Lewis, Charlie Puth and OneRepublic

Author: Gloria Ruth Finney

Gloria Ruth Finney is a Music Journalist based in Nashville, TN. She uses her experience as a multimedia journalist and on-air reporter to produce creative content by combining her passions for music and news.

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