"Don't get me wrong — I love country music, but I think the genre could take a more youthful approach to it all," the singer-songwriter tells PEOPLE

By Tricia Despres
July 16, 2021 12:00 PM
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georgia webster
Georgia Webster
| Credit: Chris Morley

It was a 10-minute breakup that inspired a three-minute song that could spell the beginning of a very successful music career for rising star Georgia Webster.

"I was actually in Florida on vacation," the 18-year-old tells PEOPLE of the endearing title track of her introductory EP First Goodbye, a 5-track treasure of an album in which she wrote every single song. "My boyfriend and I had been dating for two years and we were on the phone and talking about if we should stay together, because the long-distance thing isn't easy. We broke up for 10 minutes and I wrote this song."

And now, they are back together. Because that's what teenagers do, and this is the life teenagers' lead. But it's also a life that country music often misses.

georgia webster
Georgia Webster
| Credit: Sony Music Nashville

"Don't get me wrong — I love country music, but I think the genre could take a more youthful approach to it all," says Webster, a fan of compelling artists such as Ingrid Andress and Kacey Musgraves. "I want to relate to that younger audience, because I feel like a lot of what country music talks about are things that I haven't experienced yet, like going to bars and drinking beer. I haven't experienced that yet. So I feel like it's interesting to write about things that everyone has experienced, but also things that younger kids can also relate to too."

Hailing from a sleepy town with not a stoplight in sight, Webster grew up in "the middle of the woods," riding bikes and playing in the rivers of small-town Hampden, Massachusetts. When she wasn't outside, Webster was inside listening to Grateful Dead music and watching her dad play his guitar, dancing with her sister to every note.

georgia webster
Georgia Webster
| Credit: Chris Morley

At the same time, Webster began writing. Increasingly intrigued with Harry Potter books starting in the third grade, a world of words seemed to await Webster with each new day. This kaleidoscope of words often found themselves in the book that Webster kept on the top shelf of her closet, a book in which she would write stories of mystical creatures and ordinary times.

It wasn't until the fifth grade that Webster began joining her love for the guitar with her love of writing, and soon, songs began to erupt out of her young heart, many of which were inspired by the stories playing out in the hallways of her very own school.

"I went to middle school with the kids that lived in my really small town, and we were all best friends," she remembers, who ironically went on to title one of her first songs 'You're a Jerk' about a fellow classmate. "But then once we went to high school with the kids from the other town by us, there were all these new boys and all this new drama."

Soon, her talents became evident, and Webster found herself attending the prestigious Berklee College of Music's songwriter camps and quickly learned that she wasn't the only one fascinated by the art of putting words to songs.

"It made me realize the amount of talent that was actually out there, because in my small town, there weren't many songwriters," says Webster. "It made me realize that I needed to either go all in or I'm not going to do this at all."

So she went all in — she went on TikTok.

"I remember posting 'Tell Your Mom' one day and I woke up the next morning and it had like completely blown up," says Webster of the song she shared back in July of 2020 and the song that instantly went viral, amassing more than two million views in a matter of just a few days. Soon, Webster headed into the studio with songwriter/producer Paul DiGiovanni to create the studio version of "Tell Your Mom," and the rest is history.

Pairing her talent with a captive young audience certainly has spelled success for Webster, along with the ability to write from a young heart and sing from a tender voice cemented by the strength of a whole new generation looking to be heard.

"I owe a lot to TikTok," says Webster, who has now amassed 5.4 million TikTok likes and millions of on-demand streams. "It got me discovered. It got me my record deal. That's really how I'm here."