Tosha Hill, one of the most promising new artists from the Muscle Shoals area, is unquestionably one of the more unique and untouched original talents that has been growing quietly in the beautiful community of Florence, Alabama. The authenticity in her songwriting stands out from most, as her lyrics deeply come from the heart and consistently resonate with her audience. There are no frills or clever production with Tosha. She shares her stories that reflect and conjure powerful images with a sense of timelessness.
Honing her skills and musical influences from her father, Billy Hill Sr., Tosha exhibits an exceptional folk presence onstage that leaves audiences wanting more. Where her father instilled the work ethic and support, Tosha used those tools and ambition to cultivate a sound that is pleasing just as much as it is original. “Over the years, we’ve worked on lyrics, melodies, and my vocals together. We wrote and we wrote, and we wrote again,” she says of her father.
Being raised below the Bible Belt, church was always a constant in the Hill family, and it was there at five-years-old that Tosha discovered how music could release something much bigger than the self. Her journey began into the unknown and now the light at the end of the tunnel is getting brighter. From local churches, state fairs, songwriting competitions, and studio work, Tosha started from humble beginnings and continues to take those foundations with her wherever the next show happens to be.
Over the past few years, Tosha has begun to immerse herself more into the Nashville music circuit in Tennessee. She recalls her first time in Music City as a moment that fueled her drive to find success and meaning in music. “I remember the first time I arrived in Nashville to write with some songwriters at a start-up publishing company,” she says. “The tall buildings and bumper-to-bumper traffic seemed exciting and overwhelming at the same time. It was a huge difference from home, but my seventeen-year-old self was ready!” (Later that year, Tosha was invited to perform for the Governor of Alabama at The Legislative Orientation in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.)
In 2011, while performing at a venue in Florida, Tosha met and befriended a financial advisor from Brentwood, Tennessee who encouraged Tosha to perform and get reacquainted with the Nashville scene. With her acoustic guitar in hand, she was just one of many standing in line outside of Nashville’s renowned venue, The Bluebird Café.
Not only did she pass her first and only audition, she landed her own show shortly after – a rarity for up and coming writers. Her first show included playing alongside established songwriters such as Gordon Kennedy who wrote “Change The World” for Eric Clapton, Jim Parker and his song “I've Got A Feelin’ (Somebody’s Been Stealin’) for John Anderson, and Jerry Vandiver who wrote “It Doesn't Get Any Countrier Than This” for Tim McGraw.
Tosha has since become an out-of-town frequenter of the Bluebird Café and has since played with John Oates of Hall and Oates, with whom she now calls a good friend. “I had met John at Randy Owen’s fundraiser in Florence, and he had wanted us to stay in contact so we could get together and write. We ended up writing a Philly-ballad entitled “You Let Me Get Away” at the Nashville Songwriters Association International a couple years later,” Tosha recalls.
A week after, the two performed the song at The Bluebird Café in a round with Sam Bush and hit writer Jeff Black. Oates and Tosha also recorded the demo with engineer David Kalmusky at Addiction Sound Studios in Nashville and later performed the song in the world’s largest songwriter’s festival, Tin Pan South, in the Spring of 2015 alongside songwriter Victoria Shaw.
As Tosha readies for the next steps in her songwriting career, fans can only wait in anticipation as the young woman from Florence, Alabama shares her songwriting with a voice that brings audiences to tears and draws new listeners from around the country.
[All other performances and collaborations include: Lenny LeBlanc, John Paul White, Lonestar, Even Stevens, Randy Owen (Alabama), Brenda Lee, Lynn Langham, Donnie Fritts and The Decoys, Travis Wammack, Spooner Oldham, Christine Olhman (SNL), Donna Jean Godeaux (Grateful Dead), Hannah Aldridge, Mark Narmore, Doug Gill, Byron Hill, John Ford-Coley, Jim Seales (Shenandoah), Cindy Richardson-Walker, and Bob Reagan.]