Interview with a Songwriter: Alyssa Robbins

Alyssa Robbins is a singer/songwriter with one of the most devastatingly beautiful voices you will ever hear. I've had the personal distinction of being Ms. Robbin's (djembe) drummer in the past, and she has graciously appeared on numerous BRBRCK tracks including Bedford Stop Blues. Alyssa was good enough to answer a few questions on her songwriting process, and what's on and poppin in the new year...

1. Do you have a songwriting method, or is it different every time?

Is it in 101 Dalmations where the lead guys says, "Melody first, then the lyrics"? That's generally the case for me.  I'll fiddle around on the guitar til I get a chord sequence I like.  Then I'll piece together lyrics from journal entries, iPhone notes or general concepts I've had swimming around in my brain.  Sometimes that process takes months, sometimes hours.  It differs every time.

2. Any advice for aspiring songwriters?

Write everything down.  You never know what you're gonna end up using or tossing.  Also make voice memos for every little diddy you write.  We're lucky enough in this day in age to not have to rely just on memory and can document everything we come up with.  That being said, don't force the music.  I've been so desperate to write new songs that I'll perform things that I'm still uncomfortable with or just don't even like.  If the song's meant to come together, it will.

3. What are your feelings on collaborations?

Hell yes.  Love collaborating.  Of course it has to be with the right people and you have to try to not be too sensitive about your material, but when done correctly it can be magical and transport your music into places you never dreamed.   

4. What’s your favorite song? Favorite Album? Why?

This is the hardest question for me.  There are so many songs that never get old for me.  Currently my favorite song is called Gold in the Air by Jesse Woods.  But I have this terrible habit of playing songs over and over and over again until I'm either totally sick of them or they become a favorite and live with me forever.  Favorite album? Again, so hard but there are a few albums that I can listen to every track without skipping...which is how I know it's a favorite.  Aimee Mann, Lost in Space. Violent Femmes, Violent Femmes. The Beatles, Let it Be. I know there's more but those are the three that come up off the top of my head.  

5. What’s your latest project/wanna shill anything?

I'm still pushing the album I released in July, Our Time Was Here We Just Forgot To Be.  I just released a video for one of the tracks called "Ghost Town" at the beginning of the year and I'm making another video for a track called "Chasing Summer" at the end of this month.   Then, if everything goes as planned, I'll be on tour again this summer.

Check Alyssa out on Facebook, Twitter, and at

BRBRCK is a rapper and producer (and blogger, obviously) based in Brooklyn, NY. Check out his musical stylings here.