Stephanie Bettman Releases “Be Big”

Stephanie Bettman’s “Be Big” begins a new journey for Bettman’s musical art that, in time, will mark a pivotal turning point. The onetime folk/Americana fiddler and singer/songwriter broadens her potential appeal by branching out into a more outright form of pop music than she’s previously pursued and, as well, shifts her songwriting focus over to more heartfelt personal material than she’s peddled before. The ingredients for a rousing new confection are plentiful throughout the new single.


The chief ingredient is her voice. She has a rousing vocal that brought capable singing to bear for over a decade as one half of the Bettman & Halpin folk duo, but now proves to be equally capable in a pop music setting. The best singers inhabit their lyrics as if their lives depend on a faithful rendering, and Bettman joins such company with her emphatic performance here. It’s full of impassioned longing, resolute strength, and a keen ear for what the music demands from its vocalist.

Her voice is at home in a near-rock landscape. The driving drums, rough-hewn electric guitar, and go-for-broke tempo are excellent parts of a vehicle for her vocal performance. The guitar work, in particular, adds a muscular touch to the performance that a wide cross-section of listeners will undoubtedly appreciate. It also strengthens the claim that “Be Big” makes as a storm the ramparts type of song, a call to action that doesn’t accept life on life’s terms but, instead, urges listeners to believe that they have the power to transform their lives in whatever way they deem necessary.

The understated keyboard presence in the performance brings welcome color into the arrangement. Its most notable effects are near the opening of the track, but it continues exerting an influence further into the recording. Bettman’s turn towards pop music comes with a surprising innate understanding of what she needs to make the foray work in her favor. It’s the mark of a thorough songwriter and musician with a specific vision.


The entirety of the song comes across as the product of a recording artist who had a sound inside their head from the outset and knew what they needed to achieve it. She succeeds in stirring up a memorable concoction that isn’t disposable but, instead, can be often enjoyed. You won’t exhaust the song’s potential after a single listen. “Be Big” has uplifting properties that withstand multiple plays without ever losing their impact on listeners. Moreover, it’s a track that you can return to again and again at your low moments.

Truly inspiring work is much rarer than you might believe. We often hear regurgitated pop music that really offers nothing but variations on a theme. Stephanie Bettman’s “Be Big” goes in another direction. The vital and personalized language serves notice to listeners that she’s writing from a place of personal experience while still making the personal universal for listeners. Rarely are pop singles as charged and alive as this. Get in on it today, and you won’t be disappointed 

Nicole Killian

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Nicole loves to go cross country skiing, swimming, reading and critiquing books, listening and critiquing music, some culinary arts, pottery, spending time with my daughter, cheesy horror films.

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