Music & Culture
Q&A: Pop Group 1 Girl Nation on Writing Music, Living Boldly for Christ and More!
Written by Christi Given | May 26, 2014
This week, I have a special edition of Girl Talk, as I got to interview some of the members of the Christian pop girl group 1 Girl Nation! Many Project Inspired readers have been requesting to hear from them, and it just so happened that while I was in Nashville traveling, I got to meet up with them at the recording studio! Enjoy, PI Girls. We love you!
Here’s a music video of 1 Girl Nation’s “While We’re Young.”
[Image: Courtesy Christi Given]
Christi Given: How did you girls all come together as a group?
Carmen of 1GN: Before this group started, we were all pursuing different careers in music. We were all living in different states, so we didn’t know each other. Through our management, they were actually putting together a Christian pop girl group. All of us found out through different ways, but it was an audition process. There were initially, like, 150 girls, then they narrowed it down to 15, then those 15 came here to Nashville, and they narrowed it down to five!
CG: Wow, that’s incredible! So you each did a song and dance audition?
Kayli of 1GN: Yeah, we had to learn a couple of [Christian] songs and we could come prepared with one song of our choice. There was choreography, so we had to sing and dance, and we also went to the recording studio so they got to hear what we sounded like in the booth…thankfully, all the girls who were there were so supportive and the sweetest girls you would ever meet.
CG: You girls all seem so sweet. I see your Instagram and you girls seem like you’re always having fun and having a great time!
Carmen: Yeah, we’re silly—we do!
CG: What does “1 Girl Nation” mean?
Kayli: Well, the name “1 Girl Nation” kind of has a twofold [meaning] to it. One is that we are five girls from five different places. There is a lot of diversity that comes with that. We love to share how different we are, and we love to embrace it and so we want to tell people: Embrace your differences and come together.
CG: That’s right, totally!
Kayli: And the other part is when it’s that hard time to be that different girl, to stand up and be that one girl—set apart from the crowd. When the world goes right, you go left.
CG: That’s right, amen! I love that! I know you girls all have different looks, different personalities…what does 1 Girl Nation mean to you, Carmen? Is it the same? Does everyone have their own personal meaning for it?
Carmen: That’s pretty much what we all believe. I mean, for me it’s more like the one person can make a difference thing. I relate to that the most. A lot of times, you know, in life, you can feel alone or, like, “Man, am I the only person standing up for what’s right? One person can make a difference and you can inspire others to live boldly for Christ.
CG: That is so true. So good. And what an amazing example you girls are! What is your favorite song you girls have done so far?
Kayli: Can I give two? My favorite ballad is “In the Eyes”…it’s just impactful and I think everyone—any race, color, age—can listen to that song and it can minister to them: “You know, you are treasured, you are beautiful in the eyes of the one that made you….”I love that one, and I love “Vertical” because it’s the most upbeat and dance-y.
Carmen: I’ll give two as well. When we first started creating the album, for the longest time my favorite was “Invade,” just because I love dub-step and stuff like that. But I think my favorite one right now would be “Count Your Rainbows,” solely because our group has been thrown a bunch of curve balls lately, you know—that’s how life can seem. It’s like one day is AWESOME and one day is not so awesome, and to focus on what is “good, pure, and lovely” and to count your rainbows or blessings.
CG: I love that! So do you girls write your own music? Or do you co-write?
Kayli: We do all of the above.
CG: Wow, awesome. And what is usually your purpose or inspiration for your music?
Kayli: I think it’s personal experiences, our families…and we were blessed to be raised in the church with great parents. We have wonderful father figures, great mothers, and great friends. We’ve just been blessed with amazing people in our lives, and that’s always great inspiration. And, you know, also the ups and downs of life…everyone has ups and downs.
Carmen: I think it comes from everyday stuff. There have been times when people say something to me and I am like, “Hmm…I’m going to make that into a song.” In fact, on the way here we were stuck in traffic, so that even inspired us to write about that.
CG: Nice! I was going to ask you both: What is your favorite scripture?
Kayli: We both have the same one, but she’s trying to change hers. (laughs) It was given to me as a little girl, and I just love it—Jeremiah 29:11.
CG: I actually heard a song on the way over to the studio that featured that exact scripture! The car’s radio station was set to a gospel station, and the singer was singing, “For I know the plans I have for you….” I was thinking, “GOD, you’re so cool.” Love it! Thank you girls so much!
Both: You’re welcome! Bye PI Girls!
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)
Make sure to check out their new album, 1 Girl Nation, on iTunes now!
Connect with the girls of 1 Girl Nation!
PI Girls, what is your favorite 1 Girl Nation song? Comment below!