Singer-songwriter Doug Folkins released his latest single, “6 Pack Town” in early February, and we had a chance to chat with Doug and get to know him a little better.
Who Is Doug Folkins?
Calling Campbell River, British Columbia home for many years now, Doug Folkins moved West from New Brunswick after university to pursue a career in forestry.
Folkins has connected to artists in every corner of North America, which has landed him some big wins, including signing as a writer with Nashville publisher, Lynn Gann Music Enterprises. He’s also received a number of nominations as a songwriter with the BCCMA and has over fifty songs that have seen regular radio airplay. Doug’s song “I Can’t Blame Her” won “Best Country Song” at the 2018 Canadian Songwriting Competition.
Working with a number of artists across the country, Folkins has written with Hailey Benedict, Don Amero, Aaron Goodvin, and Buck Twenty, to name a few. He has a number of tracks coming out in the next few months as a songwriter with Brooklyn Blackmore, Patrick James Clark, and Travis Dolter.
Growing Up Around Music
Doug Folkins grew up on a farm and recalls his grandmother playing the piano often. His family had an extensive and diverse record collection that he spent a lot of time going through. His mother really loved music and that translated to his constant curiosity.
“I was always enthralled when friends would come over and play guitar or banjo. I didn’t see myself doing it.”
When Doug went to university, he happened to be paired with a roommate who played guitar. Doug remembers telling his roommate, “you must teach me to play,” and his roommate did.
Once he was confident with the guitar, he began writing songs and performing in cover bands. They played a lot of pub shows, which is where he learned a lot about what works and what doesn’t. He also learned how to interact with an audience and become an entertainer.
“I was always a creative writer through school. Once I understood music in a songwriting sense, I translated this over.”
Making a Career in Songwriting
Folkins explored indie and folk-rock music for a time, and eventually found his way to the country genre. Where people didn’t share and pitch their songs as much in these genres, it was something that happened every day in country music. Folkins being primarily a songwriter, this was really important. The core elements he appreciated most as a writer were something he could express through writing in the country genre.
“Country is so lyric driven and in contemporary country, it’s dialogue driven. When I hear people talking, that’s what captures my attention and gives me an idea.”
Given he’s an experienced songwriter, I asked Doug what advice he had for young songwriters.
He said what’s really important is the listener. “Stop thinking of yourself as an artist and think about the person on the other end of the radio speaker. What does the listener care about? This is why people are successful. You want everyone to find themselves in the song.”
To add to this, Doug says, “Nobody is looking for you. Nashville isn’t looking for you. Canadian country isn’t looking for you.” What he means by this, is you have to work hard and put yourself out there and present yourself to the people you want to work for. It’s a competitive industry; people don’t have to look for you.
Doug Folkins on Social Media
Keep up with Doug Folkins and his journey as an artist on social media!
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Country music lover with an unhealthy collection of concert t-shirts. Always looking for up and coming artists. Believer in music's ability to soothe the soul. Connect with me on Instagram and Twitter.