Making Music - and a DifferenceFeb 01, 2023 ● By Diann Nichols
By Diann Nichols
Music is in Rebekah Prim’s blood.
Music is in Rebekah Prim’s blood.
Most of her four siblings are involved in music and her parents, who were high school sweethearts, were in a Top 40 cover band that toured around the country.
Prim’s father, Tony, plays guitar at Legacy Church in Plano and also performs for musical productions in the area. Her mother, Jessie, sings at church. Prim’s grandmother, a concert pianist and opera singer, performed on television and radio as a teen.
“I feel like I was kind of born into it,” Prim, a North Texas singer-songwriter, who began taking piano lessons in grammar school, says. “I’ve always been interested in music. I was in the children’s choir at church and performed that way, so the love for it just kept growing — it never dwindled.”
She performs these days as part of the Music on Main series, sponsored by the local nonprofit organization Melody of Hope. It is held monthly at venues throughout Frisco’s Rail District and downtown.
Although she appeared in church musicals as a child, Prim says she really didn’t become interested in the theater side of performing until high school, when she joined Plano’s Chamberlain School of Ballet’s musical theater company.
“We did a lot of shows and that was extremely beneficial,” she says. “Then when I went to Collin College. I was a musical theater major and did dance classes, singing classes and acting classes.”
After college, Prim focused on her singer-songwriter career. Just as she started getting back into musicals, the pandemic hit. “It was kind of like a comedy of errors at that point,” she says. Prim has since made a return to theater, performing recently in a production of The Bridges of Madison County at the WaterTower Theatre in Addison.
As was the case for many artists, the pandemic proved to be a time of reflection and creativity for Prim. Song for Sleep, her piano instrumental, was birthed during those days.
Song for Sleep was written to bring calm, peace and lightness during the pandemic and to help people release the anxiety many were feeling, Prim says. In that same vein, she recently released another piano instrumental called Hello Sun. (Her music is available on available on Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube Music and Amazon.)
She counts among her influences singer-songwriters Sara Bareilles and Colbie Caillat as well as Christian artists Lauren Daigle and Amy Grant.
“I really love Sara Bareilles. She’s definitely one of my top influences because she’s a piano player and we have a very similar tech sound. I do a lot of her songs. Her written lyrics are just hauntingly beautiful, and so I strive to be similar in the way I write. She has just beautiful imagery that she uses.”
Prim also draws a lot of influence from Caillat. “She has a kind of style that is so very laid back — a very coffee shop-type style where it’s like, ‘Hey, I’m just in your living room.’ It’s not overly produced.”
Much of Prim’s songwriting inspiration comes from her need to help people who are struggling. Her desire to give back and help others doesn’t stop with her music. In 2010, she founded the nonprofit Beautiful You, which facilitates events for young women who are dealing with various issues.
“One of our goals is to help facilitate and make space for tough conversations,” she explains. “We talk about eating disorders. We talk about self harm. We talk about suicide. We talk about all of those things that women and teen girls especially don’t always have a safe place to talk about. We have expectations thrown on us and that leads to some of these issues that we see girls struggling with.”
The organization provides support and tools to help young women cope. “By sharing stories, these women see that they are not alone. This is not a new issue. This is a `Let’s figure this out together.’”
Through Melody of Hope, which helps artists find and book gigs with other nonprofits, Prim says she has the opportunity to perform at various events such as Music on Main.
“It’s been really fun,” she says. “I love talking to the business owners and just getting to connect with them on a personal level … and showing them, `Hey, I’m here to support you, whatever you need.’”
Melody of Hope, she says, “has been such a huge godsend. I found them two years ago and it’s essentially like a management team. They help us get bookings and find places that need people. I would love to be able to do more of that full time — to perform and sustain myself more — and this has definitely been a catapult into that.”
Diann Nichols is a freelance writer, a music lover, an armchair traveler and an amateur photographer who never tires of learning something new.