YES! Weekly Presents Live! from the ADP: Casey Noel
On Feb. 8 in front of the YES! Weekly mural on the wall of our ad department, Casey “Casey Noel” Perkins strummed her way into the hearts of everyone in the room. She played four original songs on her acoustic guitar while her long-time instructor accompanied her with his acoustic guitar and dobro.
Noel is a 21-year-old student at the University of North Carolina Greensboro and has been playing guitar since she was 5 years old. Her instructor Kevin Dollar said Noel is such a talented songwriter, that he would actually prefer to play her original songs rather than covers.
“I play in all kind of cover bands, and Casey is one of the few that I would rather play her originals than covers,” he said.
At her Live! From the ADP session, Noel played “Ages,” “Sometimes,” “Playing With Fire,” and “Pretty Words.” Noel said she wrote all of those songs within the past two years.
“‘Playing With Fire’ was my first song I ever wrote, and ‘Pretty Words’ was my newest.”
Dollar said in his 16 years of teaching Noel, her original songs and her songwriting ability outshines most.
“I won’t give her more than just an idea, but she will take that idea and make a beautiful song in the place of that idea,” he said. “Because she follows where her songwriting takes her. You can’t teach that. She is wildly independent on her own songwriting.”
Noel said she draws inspiration from Simon and Garfunkel, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Adele, Brandi Carlile and Lake Street Dive.
“I listen to a wide variety of stuff that I think affects the style of my music,” Noel said. “Because I don’t want all my stuff to sound the same.”
Noel hates to put herself in a genre box, but she said if she had to pick genres to identify with it would be Americana, folk, and blues.
Noel said that her emotions dictate her songwriting and that it all depends on her mood.
“I can’t write if I am not connected to it,” Noel said. “Right now it’s more about writing how I’m feeling in the moment of the song.”
She said writing lyrics is harder than writing music.
“I want them to say a certain thing but I don’t want to just pick words based on the melody but at the same time I want the song to sound nice,” she said. “Both are different can be equally challenging depending on the song.”
Noel’s mother, Olga, said she is her daughter’s No. 1 fan. She said she has enjoyed watching Noel’s progression and it has been a fun process for her.
“It’s been fun to watch her evolve from where she started to where she is now,” she said. “Starting with classical and now moving into acoustic, and I can tell you it’s funny because I’ve always pushed her to sing and she wouldn’t do it.”
Noel has a few gigs coming up later this month and a big show in March. On Saturday she plays at Westbend Winery in Lewisville, located at 5394 Williams Rd. On Feb. 16 she will play at Four Saints Brewing Company (located at 218 S Fayetteville St.) in Asheboro. On Feb. 22 she will be playing the Elm Street Sessions at Little Brother Brewing. Her big concert that she is excited about will be on March 23 at the Reeves Theatre in Elkin (located at 129 W Main St.). Noel said to come out and support local music at her shows and to check out her Facebook and Instagram pages (both @caseynoelmusic) to hear more.