Megan Davies started out her music career working for Sony — but until a year ago, she wasn't in front of the mic.
"I watched other people doing what I wanted to do while I'd be in a cubicle, crunching numbers," the up-and-coming singer-songwriter told A Plus following a live performance, her guitar still at her side. She'd just finished playing a mesmerizing Taylor Swift-Justin Bieber mash-up for our Facebook audience, who fell head-over-heels at first listen.
Davies is soft-spoken, and whether she's performing for a crowd or talking to you one-on-one, the first thing that strikes you is just how genuine she seems. So when the Harrisburg, Penn., native describes quitting her industry job to pursue her true passion as "terrifying," that leap and all the fears and uncertainties that come with it feel viscerally real.
"I think for me, my instinct was just to hit the road and work as hard as possible and play shows for as many people as possible," Davies said. "I think that's what took the scariness away from it — diving into work. Still, today, if I sit down too long without anything to do, it freaks me out a little."
To prepare for the transition, the self-described "guitar player at heart" started making YouTube videos at nights and on the weekends. Those videos earned Davies her first fans, but they also led to a few discouraging comments. YouTube, she observed, has its fair share of trolls — but she didn't let them get in her head.
"Whenever I start having those thoughts, 'Oh, this is too much, I'm not meant to do this,' or something, I just go back to [the fact that] this what I love to do," Davies said with a smile. "Honestly, if I wasn't sitting here in a room with you, playing for you, I'd probably be at home, playing for myself in my bedroom."
She's spent the past year playing for as many people as possible, building up a name for herself in local Nashville coffee shops and farther-flung college campuses.
She knew her hard work was making an impact when a Marine stationed in Afghanistan messaged her at 1 a.m. to say he loved her music.
But Davies isn't done yet. Next steps are recording original music in a professional studio and continuing to travel across the country, sharing her story and her songs.
None of it would have been possible without that first big leap, and all the long nights and early mornings that followed. Her advice for other aspiring artists is simple and on-point.
"Focus on the work, and focus on what you love, and the rest will follow."
Don't miss her mesmerizing mash-up above.
Cover photo via Claire Peltier / A Plus.