WRANGLER: INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY - GRIT, MEET GRACE
At 22 years old, singer-songwriter Stephanie Quayle had a moment of reckoning when she was told she was too old to break into the music business. “That just got branded into my brain because I never was raised to adhere to other people’s rules or fences,” recalls Quayle. Stepping up to the challenge with the ease of a seasoned cowgirl, Quayle formed her own label, Rebel Engine Entertainment, with a vision to empower talented women in the industry, some of whom were facing a myriad of challenges; for example, being sidelined and eventually dropped based on their perceived age value. “You can’t let anyone determine you’re done. You make that choice,” Quayle says. “That was one of the reasons I started my own company — to inspire that message of limitlessness.”
Quayle earned her tenacity, as well as her unbridled vision, growing up in Montana on a working bison and cattle ranch. “I was on the back of a horse before I could walk, you know? I was teeny tiny. You fall down, you’re in the dirt. My mom just dusted off my knees and put me back in the saddle and that was it. That’s just what I’ve done my whole life,” she says. For Quayle, her mom has been a model of resilience. “My mom taught me to ride horses. She is the west — grit and grace.” Even today, Quayle’s mom manages her own ranch. “She’s 72 years old. There’s no end to her. I think she’s my compass when it comes to choosing who to be like and become.” Now that she’s an adult, Quayle embodies the same spirit and determination as her mother, concentrating her efforts on forging a path for women in the entertainment industry. “What you see is women continuing to rise, create and do,” she says. “It’s one of the things I’ve really focused on — doing more and talking less. So that we show versus tell. Keep showing up and creating larger platforms for women in our genre. That’s very much my focus, that’s the hat I have on right now.” Quayle continues to lead by example by launching her new record label, management and entertainment company, Big Sky Music Group. The company is focused not only on signing top talent but also on providing mentorship to incoming talent, with a mission “to be a safe, inclusive and supportive home for artists and creators poised to positively impact female artists and young professionals starting out on their journey.” “I feel this is my purpose, my must. There’s such a need for more women to spread this message of, ‘No, you absolutely can and will.’ It doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy but who wants things to be easy?” Quayle emphasizes, “You gotta earn it. And then you get to own that. You know that you earned it. That’s a powerful way to walk through life. That’s grit and grace.” Visit www.bigskymusicgroup.com to learn more about Quayle’s recent endeavors.