Re Mattei’s New Album, Believin’ Is Seein’ — “because if there is one thing I want people to remember it is this… never give up… just believe!!!”

Donna Block


Photo Credit: Moments By Moser Photography

“In New Jersey I grew up listening to traditional country music. There was always Waylon Jennings, Johnny Cash, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, or Loretta Lynn, playing throughout the house. I am so grateful for those country artists that paved the way.” Which five songs would you recommend a new fan of traditional country music listen to?

George Jones — Who’s Gonna Fill Their Shoes

Waylon Jennings — Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way

Tammy Wynette — Your Good Girl’s Gonna Go Bad

Merle Haggard — Working Man Blues

Patsy Cline — Crazy

Taking a blind leap of faith and following your passion for music. How has the message of Robert Frost’s poem, The Road Not Taken, influenced your career choices?

I was taught that when you are having moments in your life when you have to make difficult decisions, to pretend you’re talking with your future self. I look at my future self 20 years from now, living the life I see in my head that I want to have with my music career …and what she thinks about it. I ask her if she has any regrets? What I have learned from using this process is the only regret she ever has is not taking the risk to pursue my music career to its full potential and use the gift that God gave me. So as the poem discusses the choice of taking two roads, I am taking the one where the path is a little grassier. Maybe not as many people were willing to take the risk to travel this path, or they quit and never finished the journey. I know that my future self 20 years from now will have no regrets because I chose that path and that makes all the difference!

Family Nurse Practitioner. “My hope is that my music can be medicine for others, so they leave the show with a smile on their face and a song in their heart.” How do you balance your medical and music careers?

That is an ongoing work in progress. I have realized as my music career has progressed, I am making some changes to have a better balance and more time for my music.

“I admire the strong women who sing and write in a way that touches my heart; artists like Miranda Lambert, Katy Perry and Colbie Caillat.What tips would you share for new songwriters to be able to tap into universal emotions?

A tip from the book The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron is a great way to stay creative. When you first wake up write 3 pages of whatever comes into your head. It doesn’t matter what you write down. No one else is going to read it. It helps to unclutter the mind. I have found I am more creative when I use this process. She calls it the morning pages. I’ve also started reading the book and using the workbook. I have already noticed a difference. I feel more creative and can tap into my emotions to use them creatively.

Describing your musical style as “You take a real smooth Pinot Noir, mix it with little dirt, add an ice cube, and stir it up real hard.” Favorite wines?

I have to laugh because a friend and I came up with that phrase. Some producers and listeners have told me that they like the smoothness of my voice, but I can also make it a little gritty at times. I enjoy dry red wines. I’m Italian, so of course, Chianti is my favorite, along with Pinot Noir and Merlots.

“I’ve always wanted to have my music on college radio. I guess that’s because I have discovered some unique artists by listening to college radio.” Which artists have you discovered listening to college radio?

Some of the first Christian artists I started listening to I first heard on college radio such as Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith, and Jars of Clay. I especially loved Margaret Becker and her song “I Commit!”

“Writing songs for my album is like wanting to take someone on a roller coaster ride. … And I hope, as we get to the bottom, they will walk away from the ride feeling hope, smiling, and empowered like they can get past any obstacle!” How has music helped you overcome obstacles in your own life?

Music was my safe place of refuge as a child. I was a geeky kid and mocked a lot at school. I would come home, put on my headphones, and listen to my favorite artists. I went through a very bad break up as an adult. I would put on my headphones and listen to Travis Tritt’s song “Anymore” over and over again with tears rolling down my eyes. That song got me through it!!

You started writing for your new album, Believin’ Is Seeing, in 2017. “I love Christmas and own almost every Christmas movie. I watched The Santa Clause, where there is a scene in which Tim Allen becomes Santa, and he is at the North Pole for the first time. In the movie, he says it is hard to believe what he is seeing: the elves, polar bears, etc. The elf says to Santa that it is not surprising. As we grow up and become adults, we forget how to dream. Santa says, ‘I see it, but I don’t believe it.’ Then the elf says seeing isn’t believing… believing is seeing!” You shared that you end your shows with the album’s title track, “because if there is one thing I want people to remember it is this… never give up… just believe!!!” Which other Christmas movies do you watch each holiday season?

Christmas Vacation, A Christmas Story, The Most Wonderful Time of the Year, Christmas Under Wraps, and A Very Merry Mix Up.

“I think Ann Wilson from Heart has one of the best rock female vocals of all time. I love listening to the 80s music and I’m a big Def Leppard fan. I admire Linda Ronstadt because she could sing any style and do it really well.” Another strong female vocalist is Carrie Underwood. She is one of the co-writers on “Feels Like It’s Gonna Rain” (along with Don Poythress and Barry Dean). What drew you to record this song?

A friend of mine had some songs from a publisher and sent it to me. It had a male vocalist singing on the demo. I heard the song while I was driving to work. Tears started rolling down my eyes and I thought, “I have to record that song”. I fell in love with it!

What’s ahead?

I am currently getting ready to go into the studio to start recording songs for the next album. I am very excited for you to hear it! I’m also working on tour dates for the summer.

Follow her on Facebook, X, TikTok and Instagram. Subscribe to her Official YouTube Channel to watch all her latest videos. Re Mattei’s music can be found on Spotify, Apple Music, Pandora, YouTube Music and Amazon Music.