Countrytown, in partnership with KIX Country, is proud to announce regional Queensland stalwart Camille Trail as our latest ‘Centre Stage’ artist. Every fortnight we'll be shining a light on a single artist across all platforms including online features, airplay, and social support.
For the past decade, Trail has been steadily rising in stature as one of the most bewitching young artists in Australian country. She was born in the microcosmic central Queensland town of Baralaba (some 650km northwest of Brisbane), where as a kid she learned to play piano before moving on to the guitar and writing her earliest tunes. She played her first live show at 14, and from that moment on, there was no stopping her. After high school, she headed off to JMC Academy in Brisbane to study music full-time.
2019 was when things started picking up for Trail, linking up with Brisbane’s own legendary Shane Nicholson (twice-named Producer Of The Year at the Golden Guitar Awards) to work on demos that February. One of the songs they minted, Humming Chain, became her debut single that July, and promptly caught the ears of Compass Bros Records. After signing with the Sydney-based label, Trail soared from small-town underdog to mainstream stalwart with her next string of singles – including Little History, Oh Darling and the Brad Butcher-assisted Holding Pattern – before she released her debut album, River Of Sins, in August of 2021.
The 11-track effort was lauded by critics – Sophie Hamley of Sunburn Country Music, for example, described it as “beautiful, earthy [and] timely” – and it went on to peak at #5 on the ARIA Country chart. One of the biggest singles from the record was its second track, I Know I’m Hard To Love, which ended up scoring a nod at last year’s Queensland Music Awards. Unpacking her entire album for Countrytown, Trail pegged I Know I’m Hard To Love as “the most vulnerable track on the record, admitting she was “extremely nervous” to release it.
2021 also earned Trail a Golden Guitar nomination for New Talent Of The Year, bolstering her platform as she started working on her next set of material – the first chunk of which finally arrived just last Friday (August 11) in the form of her new single Gotta Get To Know You. On how her new material reflects her growth as an artist, she said: “A lot of life has happened in three years. A lot of growing up.”
She hit a major milestone at the start of this year, too, having jetted off to Kansas City for a series of songwriting sessions with the world-renowned Folk Alliance. “It was just like this really beautiful energy,” Trail reflected in a statement, saying it was “really inspiring” to engage with “so many creative people in the one space. She continued: “It was very cup-filling: it’s overwhelming but it was also, Yep, this is what I want to be doing. People ask, ‘What kind of artist are you?’ And I’m like, ‘I don’t know.’ At this point [in] time my music is this but I don’t know what kind of artist I am. I feel like we are always figuring that out every day.
“It’s weird: all the music and the topics and just my life is like one big metaphor at the moment. It all merges into one.”
For local fans in Brisbane, Trail will premiere Gotta Get To Know You this Saturday (August 19), joining the likes of Hayley Marsten, Melody Moke, Billie Rose Copeland and Beth Lucas for this year’s Write Like A Girl showcase. And over a four-day stint spanning September 21-24, she’ll bring her life-affirming live show to regional Queensland crowds in Bundaberg, Gundiah and Namour. If you’re in the area – or of course, down for a good ol’ fashioned road trip – tickets can be found on Trail’s website here.