MEREWETHER country artist Lili Crane picked up the guitar at 9 years old after a friend suggested she take some lessons.
By 10 she was getting serious and was already writing her own material.
Now at 16, she has already recorded three original tracks, in Nashville, for a new EP and has her eyes firmly set on a career in the music industry.
Crane said she had initially been put off the country music “vibe” by Taylor Swift.
“But then I completely changed my mind. I started listening to Tim McGraw and Keith Urban and thought this is really good music,” she said.
“I just love the vibe you get when you listen to country.
“The slide (guitar), it just sounds awesome.”
In 2016 Crane won the Rural Aid Australia's Rising Star competition. First prize was two return tickets to Nashville and a week’s accommodation.
She claimed the prize in May 2017 and set off to visit the country music Mecca, where she laid down the tracks for a soon-to-be released EP All The Sweet Things.
Crane has also had a recording session with Billy Field after her grandfather, a neighbour of the 1980s hit-maker, told him about his “talented granddaughter”.
“He owns a property behind my grandparent’s house in Branxton,” she said.
“Bob-Bob, my grandfather, went out and introduced himself. Turns out it was Billy Fields.
“Bob-Bob tells Billy about me and he said, ‘I’d love to have her up in the studio one day and record.’”
“So I went and did some recordings with him.”
She laid down three covers in Field’s Central Coast studio, but has no plans to release them.
“It was so cool. He is such a cool, laid back guy,” she said. “He was pretty happy with them.”
Her EP is expected to be released next month. Its three tracks are titled What You Did to Me, All The Sweet Things and High Speed.
“I wrote What You Did To Me about a boy I was struggling to get. I really, really liked him,” she said.
“I ended up getting him, so I wrote All The Sweet Things.”
The third track is about an interaction Crane had in the surf off The Cliff beach, near Merewether.
“High Speed is about a run in I had in the surf with this guy. I didn’t see him coming on the inside and I dropped in on him,” she said.
“He didn’t pull off, he just kept coming at me … he went straight through my board and then proceeded to carry on like a pork chop for the next 20 minutes or so, until I ended up paddling in.”
Crane is now working on material for second EP.
Follow her: facebook.com/Lili-Crane-Music