Artist Spotlight: Dianna Corcoran

It’s hard to describe Dianna Corcoran as a “new” artist, as she’s a well-established star in her native Australia, complete with #1 albums and songs and plenty of awards. However, Corcoran is taking 2016 to introduce herself and her five-octave vocal range to American audiences with a new album, appropriately titled In America, on Krian Music Group/Universal Music.

“In Australia I’ve had great success, and people love country music there, but no one loves country music like America,” Corcoran says. She’s no stranger to the U.S., as she’s lived in Nashville for four years and has recorded several albums here. She says she fell in love with Nashville when she first arrived, but the city’s reputation as Music City also helps with her pop songwriting career.

“Even though I am a country artist, I can explore every avenue of what I do behind the scenes as well,” she says.

All of Corcoran’s musical sensibilities are in evidence on In America. The opening track and lead single, “God Did Good,” opens with thunderous drums and an engaging pop-country sound. At the other end of the country music spectrum is the more traditional “Thank You for Cheating on Me,” a hit in Australia that Corcoran thought would find an audience in the U.S. as well. As a whole, In America helps introduce Corcoran to a new audience and helps to explain all the accolades she’s received in her home country.

In America - Dianna Corcoran COVERCorcoran co-wrote every song on the album, working with established hitmakers like Gary Burr, Trey Bruce and Kristian Bush. She says that most of her songs are based on her past experiences or feelings.

“I don’t write anything that I can’t relate to, personally,” she says. “I think there’s only one song on there that was not the idea that I brought to the table. I usually had part of a chorus already written, and I’d be happy to share it with these amazing songwriters because I know they would help me tell my story in a better way, and that is what’s important.”

“God Did Good” was written with Bush and Jeff Cohen, and it came about after an attempted compliment from Corcoran’s husband.

“My husband is actually German, and some of his English can be clunky at times,” she says, laughing. “He was trying to tell me that God has done a good job in putting me together, and I sort of translated it for him.”

“Thank You for Cheating on Me” (written with Rebecca Lynn Howard and Rachel Thibodeau) was a #1 hit in Australia, and she decided to add it to her American debut as well. The song, also based on a true story, was her version of a cheating song, but without any bitterness involved.

“I believe that everything happens for a reason, and when I walked away from that situation after he cheated me, I ended up with a much better person,” Corcoran says. It’s quirky, it’s fun, it’s very up-tempo and not bitter, and that was the goal. I think that’s why it was such a success in Australia, and when I sing it here in America, it also translates. I couldn’t not share it.”

Corcoran produced all but one song on the album, and while In America sounds clean and professional, it hasn’t been Autotuned and polished to within an inch of its life. Corcoran wanted to present an authentic experience, and part of that meant leaving things alone.

“There are some flaws in the vocals that I just left there, because that’s how I sung it,” she says.

Other choices in the album show her preference for authenticity. “Not Ready to Lose” was written with Burr, and instead of bringing in an established name as a duet partner, she sang it with Burr — a fine vocalist in his own right, but someone more known for his writing abilities. The closing song, “A Better Me,” is the raw version that Corcoran recorded on her iPhone immediately after writing it with Jeremy Spillman.

“When I was listening to that little recording, I thought that if I tried to produce this, I’m going to ruin it. It was meant to be this vulnerable,” she explains. “I wrote it in a broken heart state, and the way that I sung it and the way that it was played is the way that it needs to go to the audience, because it’s real. I ended up just literally slapping that iPhone recording to the end of the record.

“It may not be the most perfect vocal in the world, but it was real, and that’s exactly how it was sung,” she adds.

Corcoran has traveled through the U.S. for radio promotion and played some shows, but she hasn’t had a proper tour yet. She hopes to change that in 2016, once the album is released. She’s also ready to fight the challenge that female artists face on mainstream radio, as evidenced by this summer’s Saladgate debate. It’s a situation that she says doesn’t exist in Australia.

“Radio will play you no matter if you’re male or female. In fact, if they were to hear about that scenario, they’d probably laugh and think that you were joking,” she says. “But, I’ve spoken to so many major radio people here that say it’s not true. If it sounds great, they’re going to play it. So it doesn’t scare me one little bit.”

In America will be released on January 29, 2016. The album can be streamed here:


  1. I’m quite familiar with many of the Australian Country artists but Dianna Corcoran seems to have slipped by me. Australian Country Music seems to be divided into two broad areas (1) “Bush Balladeers” such as Slim Dusty, Tex Morton, Gordon Parsons and Buddy Williams, who sing a more rural-oriented music, and Contemporary Country which is more urban in its approach although it can range from very traditional to country music that seems barely country. Australian Country artists seem to move back and forth between traditional and modern contemporary music more easily that do their American counterparts. Acts such as Wayne Law, Kirstie Akers, Gina Jeffreys and the Sunny Cowgirls have put out music and music I really haven’t liked.

    I look forward to hearing some more about Ms Corcoran

  2. She seems to have a decent voice, but some of her material could be an issue. One reviewer’s comment on her single, “God Did Good”:
    Dianna’s sweet vocals are distinct, and the songwriting is catchy. The first verse in “God Did Good” brings an image of Luke Bryan to mind, “everything about you turns me on when you shake your hips, you rattle my bones… From your skin tight shirt to the holes in your jeans, you race my heart like I’m sixteen.” I think this reviewer considers comparison to LB to be a compliment.

    I don’t dislike pop country. My favorite Australian pop country artist is O’Shea, a husband and wife duo, Mark and Jay. Earlier this year I bought their 3rd album, “The Famine and the Feast”, and I’ve seen them twice. Melinda Schneider is another Aussie I like.

    I applaud Corcoran’s decision to have Gary Burr as her duet partner on “Not Ready to Lose”. I agree that he is a “fine vocalist in his own right” in addition to being a member of the Country Music Songwriters Hall of Fame.

  3. Some excellent Australian country music.

    Amber Lawrence
    Sherrie Austin
    Kasey Chambers
    Catherine Britt
    Jamie O’Neal
    Jasmine Rae
    The McClymonts

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