Music industry veteran Brianna Ruelas makes her debut

If you do a Google search for Brianna Ruelas, the autocomplete has the subtitle “singer”. Ruelas has just released her first single, “Thieves”, and although she is only technically “starting” her singing career now at 42, she has been a singer her entire life and a force in the music industry. music over the past decade.

Ruelas was born and raised in Dallas and is a music coach who has authored two books and has helped many aspiring artists find their voices in a turbulent industry. Ruelas auditioned for season four of American Idol, entering the top 100 before being knocked out at the Hollywood audition.

“This was before the DIY revolution,” says Ruelas. “Everything has changed in the recording industry, and I always tell people that in my 20s, dreaming about music was more of a pipe dream. The record companies were the gatekeepers, and I wasn’t going to be P! Nk. It was really far-fetched, so a show like American Idol got me thinking that maybe I could step in the door and start building relationships. Maybe I can do this music thing.

Ruelas says that despite the elimination, her experiences on the show taught her more than she could have learned by trying to make music on her own.

“It’s not just about being on the show,” says Ruelas. “It’s about maximizing and leveraging the platform. A lot of these artists who are on these shows think that just because they don’t win their music career is over or that they’ve missed something in some way or another. It doesn’t matter whether you win or not or how far you get, you can always win your way.

After American Idol, Ruelas started a family and believed his dreams of making music were more or less over, fueled by lingering notions that “you can’t do it after your twenties” or “once you start having children. , say goodbye to your musical career, ”in his words.

Subsequently, she turned to vocal and industrial coaching and consulting and wrote two books for artists: Performers’ journey and Make reality TV your reality. Many of his clients have ended up with the help of Ruelas, like Jo James, who appeared in season 17 of The voice, Frankie Leone, who won the 2018 Dallas Watcher Music Award for Best Country Actor and Upcoming Indie / Folk / Rock Singer-Songwriter Kaatii.

“I literally have nothing but wonderful things to say about Brianna,” Kaatii says. “She’s, like, a huge reason that I’ve shaped the artist that I am. She helped me discover not only who I wanted to be as an artist, but who I wanted to broadcast to. When I first started working with her – I’m not going to lie – I hadn’t thought about it. ”

Ruelas introduced Kaatii to California singer-songwriter Kara Connolly, who co-wrote “Afraid of the Dark” with Kaati and several other songs that have yet to be released.

“Brianna is a fearless and powerful businesswoman, mentor and support system for so many up-and-coming artists, as well as incredible talent herself,” said Connolly. “Brianna is an encouraging, which is rare in our culture of constant comparison. She recognizes someone’s gold and isn’t afraid to polish it and watch it shine. She is real. She speaks openly about the shadows we all face, such as self-doubt, regret, and fear, with a seriousness that draws you in and makes you feel at home.

“It comes down to this notion of overturning the myth, overturning the system. Just because I’m 42 doesn’t mean I’m too old for that. –Brianna Ruelas

Tweet this

“I’m a strategist,” says Ruelas. “I’m really excellent at organization and planning. My husband and I are restaurant owners, so we took a lot of our entrepreneurial experience from small businesses, and applying it to the music industry, there are a lot of similarities.

“Sometimes we get so caught up in the excitement of releasing the music that we forget the first step, which is to identify who our music is for, who we are and how you are going to market and promote.”

As a result, Ruelas has spent his time helping artists run their businesses, market themselves and launch their brand.

“A friend of mine in the neighborhood opened a music school and she asked me to be the music director, so we started coaching young singers and bands, and a lot of that experience became the basis. of [my first book] Performers’ journey“, says Ruelas.” At the time [of writing that book] there was no such emphasis on self-care and depression in the music industry. People just weren’t talking about it back then, so I wanted to create something that illustrates that it’s not always a cakewalk.

“Artists tend to have these high performances with all this praise and adulation, and then there’s this crash. I explained how debilitating it can be for artists who rely on these performances, so when they don’t mess . ”

The wisdom Ruelas has accumulated permeates tracks such as “Thieves,” a painful power ballad, with a sense of lived truth.

“It comes down to this notion of overturning the myth, of overturning the system,” says Ruelas. “Just because I’m 42 doesn’t mean I’m too old for that.”

Alice P. Darby