(No animals were harmed in the making of this interview recording but some did talk, and quite fluently.)
Dolly and Cash, please introduce us to your dog-mom, RaeLynn:
“RaeLynn is an incredibly talented singer and super fun, beautiful, free-spirited girl from Baytown, Texas. RaeLynn has a heart full of Jesus, sunshine, rainbows, unicorns and love for dogs little and large. RaeLynn was on The Voice in 2012, Season 2, where she became friends with the fancy Mr. Blake Shelton and was even featured on a couple of Blake Shelton’s songs, “Boys ‘Round Here” and “Buzzin”. Since her The Voice jump start, RaeLynn has made some amazing music in Nashville, TN with songs like “God Made Girls”, “Love Triangle” and, Princess Dolly’s personal favorite, “Queens Don’t”.
RaeLynn, what does the saying “Dogs are better than people” mean to you?
“Dogs love endlessly and honestly. Besides the fact that Dolly runs away sometimes, dogs don’t really let you down, they’re always consistent.” RaeLynn and I went on to discuss how we feel like some people can unintentionally let us down, but dogs are always there for you. Maybe we just have less expectations of dogs and their emotional capabilities than we do of people?
Dolly, why do you sometimes like to run-away from home?
“I’m a traveler, like RaeLynn. I love to explore, be on the go and have new experiences. Sometimes I feel like Ariel form “The Little Mermaid,” you know? I love my family and don’t ever want to actually be without them, but I just know that there are other things out there to explore than what is under the sea, where I live. Secretly I have visions of Scuttle bringing me a dingle-hopper as I’m basking in the sunlight with my mom right beside me.”
Cash, you are filling some big shoes after RaeLynn’s German Shepard, Jazz, passed. How does that make you feel?
Cash: “RaeLynn has type 1 diabetes and I want to learn to support her however she needs me to. It’s not easy. A lot of the book work they want me to do and learning of words in another language that I have to comprehend is a lot for a 2 year old pup. But, I am willing to put in the effort because my mom means everything to me and I’m all for working hard to make sure she stays healthy. Oh, and I get lots of treats too when I do the right things.”
RaeLynn: “Jazz was such a part of me and Josh and our family. It was really hard for me to get another dog. And I had to put that love somewhere and I realized the only way to get over my broken heart with Jazz was to find another Shepard to pour my love into. That’s when I found Cash. I got him at Global K-9 here in Nashville and they work with German Shepards.”
When did Dolly come into the picture?
Dolly: “You know they say that dogs just have their person. I used to feel like I was missing my person. RaeLynn’s dad was the one who initially had me as a puppy, but when RaeLynn was moving to Nashville, I knew that I was destined to be the Nashville Princess to my Queen mom, RaeLynn. [Of course Dolly is referencing one of RaeLynn’s songs titled “Queens Don’t”] It was just like the Disney storybooks, and fate brought us together as companions for life.”
RaeLynn: “My dad has two Chihuahuas and he wanted a Chihuahua that was his, because the two Chihuahuas like my stepmother better. He [RaeLynn’s Dad] said, ‘I want a Chihuahua that’s mine and goes with me to work!” RaeLynn goes on to talk about how her dad conceded and gave up ‘his’ dog for RaeLynn so she could have a dog be with her in Nashville. RaeLynn said, “Dad, please give me this dog, she’s mine, she’s perfect…and now they [RaeLynn’s Dad and Step-mom] still have the two Chihauahuas, he still hasn’t gotten ‘his’ dog!”
Dolly will be turning 8 this year, and has since become RaeLynn’s timemarker of how long she’s been in Nashville after leaving her hometown of Baytown. Baytown is RaeLynn’s new EP which dips on August 14th! You can listen to two songs from the album now!
Dolly: “Actually, Sara, I am the inspiration behind the whole album since Baytown is my hometown, too. RaeLynn totally put my thoughts into beautifully sounding words. We’re such a great team! She really gets me, so it was great to collaborate on this project with RaeLynn. Don’t forget to give me song-barking credit. My tiny little paws have their stamp all over this album.”
Who would Dolly be if she was a human?
RaeLynn: “Dolly is definitely a girl that would live in the Hamptons. She loves going outside, she loves sunbathing. She also has a bit of sass to her because she’s kind of older. She would be like an old California lady, like a pristine accent.”
Dolly, in what ways are you and RaeLynn similar?
Dolly answers after a big yawn. “Hold on a second, Sara. I need you to ask me that again, I was sleeping. Oh, how are my mom and I similar? We are both lazy in the morning. While my dog-brother, Cash, is always the first up in the morning, I can simply sleep for days. And frankly, my mom can too. We are both so beautiful. That’s what I attribute our need of sleep to, we need our beauty rest.”
RaeLynn, how is Cash a human?
RaeLynn: “To me he is like an annoying 7 year old boy. Always trying to please his mom, is going to do what he wants. He’s so good, such a good dog, but he is Mr. Pleaser.”
Cash: “I just want RaeLynn to love me. When RaeLynn says “no, sir!” it basically affects my emotions for the entire hour (which is actually 7 hours in dog, time… so a long time.). I know I’m not great at controlling my puppy outbursts of excitement. I just am a big ol’ love bug that was given this tough-breed-shell as a German Shepard. I’ve overheard people say that German Shepard dogs are big ol’ meanies and that’s just not true. We have hardcore shells and hearts of gold.”
RaeLynn, tell me About “Rae From The Heart”.
RaeLynn: “I feel like there is a lot of layers to me that not a lot of my fans have had a chance to see. Of course I will always promote my music. My music is number one, but I feel like if you know me and you follow me, you get to see a little bit of my heart but not really. I’m not diving in deeper [about scriptures] like I want to. I’ve always had divine appointments that have affected my life and if I get on there and it affects one person, I’ve done my job. I’ve been to places where I was one of 10 people and I’ve been affected for the rest of my life by that one event. It’s so important to speak what is on your heart. The more I’m unapologetically myself, the more I’m connecting to my fans because people relate to real, they don’t relate to fake. I just think that Rae From The Heart opened that up.”
Dolly & Cash: “Here’s what we think about “Rae From the Heart.” We know RaeLynn’s heart like noooooobody else. And it’s fun to hop on the Instagram and be part of the stars of her show.”
Dolly: “Cash, you know that they all get on the show to see me!”
RaeLynn: “A lot of fans are like, ‘play music, play music!’ but that’s not what this is about. It’s about connection and I think now more than ever people are craving real connection.”
RaeLynn has always been sprinkling her love of Jesus into her world. I love her authenticity and vulnerability talking about how God has helped her in every season of her life. RaeLynn’s answer to, “What is your favorite Bible verse, and why?” was a poignant response for the world-wide pause we have all been experiencing.
RaeLynn: “This is my favorite [and RaeLynn pulled up these verses on her phone to read it from the NIV version]: Ecclesiastes 3, ‘There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.”
I also asked RaeLynn if Cash and Dolly had a favorite Bible verse, and her response made me laugh. “Always obey your parents, is the one that I wish that they would like.”
Tell me about your new song “Keep Up”.
RaeLynn: “I pray, but I love to party too!”
RaeLynn loves to be on stage, from The Voice’s stage to sharing stages and opening for Blake Shelton, Rascal Flatts, Miranda Lambert and Maren Morris on a fun tour called “Girl: The World Tour.” RaeLynn goes on to talk about her new song “Keep Up” and how it’s connecting with fans because it’s a song that RaeLynn really likes. It’s a song that is connecting with fans and that’s where she’s wanted to get to! “It’s rowdy, it’s keep up, these are the songs that I would love to perform live. And that has just added such a cool perspective to the music and the fans absorbing it.”
Did you write “Keep Up”?
RaeLynn: “We got all kinds of rednecks there [in Baytown, Texas where RaeLynn grew up] so basically I just started writing ‘I’ve got gucci gang, I’ve got twang, I love all these different things.” Now that I’ve released it, I have all these girls tagging me in videos doing all this stuff; a girl riding her horse around barrels, a girl noodling with catch fish with her bare hands and a bikini and she’s hot with abs. And it’s so cool because all these country girls have made this song their anthem and it’s so cool because that’s what I wanted.”
RaeLynn wrote the song with Tyler Hubbard from Florida Georgia Line, Steven Lee Olsen and Corey Crowder at a Festival called Lake Shake in Chicago.
Speaking of writing new songs, which songs would Dolly and Cash have written?
RaeLynn responded for the pups because we were towards the end of our interview and Dolly and Cash were tired of my questions. Dolly would’ve written “Bra Off” because she’s just that type of feisty girl and Cash would’ve written “Keep Up” because it’s so fun!
What has been your routine while at home for working out?
Cash wanted to answer this question. “RaeLynn is always doing fun at home workouts and those are my favorite. I’m learning yoga too. Dolly likes to sleep through the workouts. Also, I love the walks my mom takes too.”
I was just about to wrap up my interview when Dolly popped up and wanted to make sure I knew this fact: “The Chihuahua is the smallest breed of dog, and is named after the Mexican state of Chihuahua.”