Tulsa-based singer/songwriter Briana Wright is a cornerstone in the music scene. Wright grew up singing in church and turns to music to express herself, reminding us of music’s ability to navigate complex social issues.
How did you get started?
I’ve always loved to sing and when I could get up the nerve, would perform at church or school programs as a kid. I dealt with a lot of stage fright but my stint on XFactor season two was a huge game-changer for me. When I got home from filming in Miami, I took my new confidence and started singing anywhere they’d let me.
Did you always want a career in the music industry?
I definitely always dreamt of being a singer, but didn’t know if I would ever be able to overcome my confidence issues. My family, my mom especially, always believed I was capable and meant to make music. I’m so lucky to have had them encouraging and pushing me along.
What is your role in the music industry?
I think prior to this year, I’d just call myself a “singer”, but this past year, writing with CLIFFDIVER and now producing my own solo project, I feel okay calling myself an actual “artist” for the first time.
Most Recent Successes / Placements / Accomplishments / Projects? Career highlight?
Recently, I was the subject of a small NPR feature and the recognition, especially these days, was massive for me. Both of my bands, CLIFFDIVER and Nightingale, will be releasing new music this year and my solo project soon after. All of these projects have been a massive amount of work, so I’m very proud and excited to put them out in the world.
What is your favorite Oklahoma music venue, music store, or recording studio?
As a kid growing up in Tulsa, I always dreamed of performing at Mercury Lounge and Cain’s Ballroom. To me, they were absolutely legendary so having the opportunity to perform on both stages and build relationships with the amazing people behind them this past year has blown my mind. And my favorite music store is definitely Josey Records in Tulsa.
Can you share which Oklahoma organizations (if any) have contributed to your success and are there Oklahoma organization you would recommend other connect with?
The Tulsa Office of Film, Music, Arts & Culture team has proven their commitment to local artists and I would strongly suggest anyone in those fields register on their Tulsa Creativity Database and take a look at their advocacy and resources!
How can we follow you? Best place to purchase and listen to your music (if applicable)?
I’m on Twitter/Instagram as @itsbrianawright and you can follow my bands Nightingale (@nightingaleband on Instagram) and CLIFFDIVER (@cliffdiverok on Twitter/Instagram) as well. New music is coming soon, but both bands have music available now for streaming/purchase on all major platforms.
Advice for someone interested in working in the music industry.
Comparison won’t serve you, root for everyone
What are some of the benefits of having a music career in Oklahoma?
I love being based in Tulsa and I believe we have the most talented and diverse pool of untapped musicians and artists on the planet. Especially with all of the national attention on us lately, it’s such a blessing and so inspiring to be surrounded by all of these incredible artists and projects like Fire in Little Africa thriving and getting the spotlight they deserve.
“Everything is us” – Steph Simon, Fire in Little Africa