Brandi Carlile Talks Sara and The Story.

Posted by on May 4, 2011 in Interview, Music, Sara Ramirez, Season 7 | 15 comments

After Ellen snagged an interview with Brandi Carlile, who’s epic ballad “The Story” got many people crying out for Sara Ramirez to win an Emmy for her rendition on the Musical Event. Brandi weighs in on her thoughts on Sara’s performance and what got her a little upset over some things that Sara said.. or neglected to say.

There aren’t any spoilers, as Brandi appears to avoid them herself.

Check it out.

AE: Shifting gears a bit, Grey’s Anatomy has always featured a lot of your music.
That show has been incredibly instrumental, so to speak, throughout the course of our careers. I think we’ve had like nine songs on that show. Some of them we wrote or recorded or constructed just for the show. I mean that’s how involved I’ve gotten in it. I really love that television show.

AE: Did you see the musical episode? What did you think of Sara Ramirez’s take on “The Story”?
I did see it. I get such a kick out of hearing people sing my songs. It makes me so happy to think that somebody else would care enough about something that I wrote or something that I sang to cover it. I think she’s a hell of a singer; probably the best singer ever to do the song that I’ve seen as far as covers go. As a fan of the show, it definitely was a huge moment. I was overwhelmed at the opportunity to have been a part of it.

AE: With Sara and “The Story,” how did you first find out?
The people from the show told me that it was going to happen. I was super excited about it. I saw all the things that she did with it. She’s probably my favorite character on Grey’s Anatomy. The only thing about the whole thing that kind of made me so sad is that of course I watched every version of it that she did on, like, Good Morning America. She always said that she was doing a song by (bassist) Philip Hanseroth.

It’s kind of sad but I got over it. The only reason it is sad is because I do enjoy the show so much and her character particularly. Maybe if she does it again sometime she’ll represent. If there’s one thing about people covering “The Story” that I’ve always wanted to hear it’s that nobody goes for it at the end. They always just kind of go back to the first version. She really went for it and she nailed it. So, I’m really happy.

AE: What did you think of the song being used in such an instrumental part of a lesbian story line, especially leading up to Callie and Arizona’s wedding?
It made me so proud. That’s a powerful song. That’s a powerful subject matter that they’re dealing with. Like I said, when they said that they were going to use the song on that show, I intentionally didn’t read the script about where the song was going to be placed because I didn’t want to know what happens. I watch that show every week. I’m following that story line and I was just really kind of excited to be a part of it.

That’s subject matter that we’re dealing with all the time in our community. All the parental stuff and the stuff around (gay) marriage and civil unions. That’s relevant and that show’s tackling it and I’m just impressed as hell that they are.

AE: The big wedding episode is coming up May 5, so hopefully we’ll see more.
If you know anything about it don’t tell me. May 5 is the day I leave for tour, dammit!

AE: Maybe Sara can send you a screener.
Yeah. Maybe. I’ll tell you what. If I ever come to L.A., maybe I’ll ask her to come out and do it as a duet with me. Wouldn’t that be so fun?

(Source|After Ellen)

Check out the rest of the interview at After Ellen. You can get there via the Source Link above.

I was thinking back over it and yeah, Sara did mention Philip Hanseroth way more than Brandi. I can see why she’d be a little upset. But Sara was crediting the writer, not the artist. Maybe she could have mentioned both? But then it was being done on her EP, maybe mentioning another artist wasn’t what Sara wanted when trying to get her EP out there. Who knows.





  1. True, it wasn’t cool at all and even disrespecful from Sara Ramirez not to quote Brandi Carlile on her EP but are you really surprised?! Not me!
    Personally, I prefer Carlile’s version because even if the singer doesn’t have a powerful voice, she managed to bring some emotion through her performing, even though Ramirez only shouts!

    • @gbraeme71, What do you mean by saying “but are you really surprised?”
      And I don’t know how to reply to you when you say that Carlile doesn’t have a powerful voice… Have you ever listened to her at all?

      • @Pri$ci, What I wanted to say is Carlile doesn’t have a voice as powerful as Ramirez for sure, but rather a rocky voice which fit perfectly to this song.
        -> Ramirez uses rather her powerful voice than the emotion IMHO,…

        As for my comment about the fact that I wasn’t surprised about the non-quoting from Ramirez to Carlile each time she was invited on TV sets and on her EP, I wanted to say that she completely appropriated the song ” The Story ” even though this song is a huge part of Grey’s Anatomy’s history like ” Chasing Cars” from Snow Patrol and/or The Fray’s How to save a life”
        For the fans of the very previous seasons, Carlile, Snow Patrol, The Fray will be always the unique performers whose songs matched parfectly with the scenes their songs accompanied.

        Of course, people are free to like /love Ramirez version of “The Life”, like KMK singing or even the new version of “How to save a life” etc… but for me the original versions are and will be always better than reprises, because there is a story behind … :-)

        • @gbraeme71, “How to Save a Life” was written by members of The Fray and “Chasing Cars” was written by a member of Snow Patrol. “The Story” was not written by Carlisle. It was written by Philip Hanseroth. Read my post below.

  2. There is no need to mention Brandi Carlisle. She didn’t write the song. She performed it. And Sara Ramirez performed it. I sang it while in the shower the other day. I didn’t recognize Carlisle’s performance of the song as I was washing my hair. She is jealous that Sara Ramirez’s version has gotten more attention than her version. Honestly, I don’t blame her, but that’s not something you say out loud!!!! If Carlisle had written the song, she would have been acknowledged as doing so.
    “I Can Love you Like That” was performed by All-4-One and John Michael Montgomery but was written by Steve Diamond, Maribeth Derry, and Jennifer Kimball. Did All-4-One credit JMM for the song or vice versa? No. Ave Maria was written by Franz Schubert (music) and Sir Walter Scott (lyrics) and performed by thousands. “Hi, I’m Josh Groban and I’d like to thank Harry Connick, Jr for singing Ave Maria before I did.” Really? What about Luciano Pavarotti, Charlotte Church, Bobby McFerrin or countless other performers who have sung the song? Do they deserve acknowledgement for singing it? “To Make you Feel My Love” was performed by Garth Brooks, Billy Joel, Adele, Bryan Ferry, Joan Osborne, Josh Kelley, Trisha Yearwood, Neil Diamond, Shawn Colvin, Luka Bloom, Timothy B. Schmit, Bryan Ferry, Mary Black, Ruarri Joseph, Phil Keaggy, Bill Evans, Taylor Hicks, Jon Peter Lewis, Kris Allen, Maria Muldaur, Jeremy Irons, and Kelly Clarkson, as well as others. It was written by Bob Dylan. The performers acknowledge Bob Dylan, not the others who previously performed the song.

    Acknowledge the WRITER. The person who did all the work on a song – the one who actually poured their heart and soul into the culmination of lyrics and music sometimes bringing us to tears, laughter, or dancing. Those are the people who work the hardest.

    Ramirez covered “the Story” on her own EP because she clearly felt a connection to the song after performing it for the show. The EP version is softer than the Grey’s version. She co-wrote the other three songs on the EP. I have so much respect for someone with the talent to write and compose music and the guts it takes to bare in all in a song !!

    “Disrespect” is putting down an obviously talented singer AND songwriter like Ramirez. You don’t have to like it. But you surely have to respect pure, raw TALENT.

    (I apologize if I mis-referenced something, I didn’t have a chance to google all of my info.)

    • @Jonesy, Thank you! I completely agree.

    • @Jonesy, I totally agree with you!!

  3. Well, Sara did credit the song writer P.Hanseroth each time she performed it, so I don’t see why is it such a big deal. From what I know, when a singer is covering certain song, they are obliged to credit the song writer. And Sara did that. She even credited Brandi C. when she was on The View two weeks ago. Maybe Brandi had a minor diva moment there.
    Honestly, I love both versions of the song. Each version has its own appeal because the two of them have different type of voices and different styles of singing. But the best thing, in my opinion, is that they both perform the song with such an amazing and raw emotion, so you can feel its meaning.
    On the brighter side, maybe there’ll be a duet coming from them. :)

  4. Also I did see a show where she mentioned Brandi Carlisle sang it originally. I think it was either The View or Rachael Ray. I don’t think she had an obligation to mention her which is probably industry standard. From what Brandi said I thought maybe she co-wrote the song but apparently she didn’t. I sincerely doubt it was any kind of “conspiracy” by Sara not be mention her. Probably just a nice to have and Sara did mention it in at least one of her appearances. I think Sara is really a sweet and wonderful person!

  5. @jonesy totally agreed !!! I remember in one of her interviews, Sara did mention that Carlisle sang the song before her and I think that that’s enough. I also think that it is kind of unnecessary and impolite for Carlisle to talk about her disappointment at Sara so publicly.

  6. The interview with Brandi probably happened before the other shows, or she just didn’t see them. She said it made her sad that it wasn’t represented, not that it didn’t mention her name. It’s good Sara acknowledge the writer for sure, and it’s Carlile’s bassist, but they are a BAND (if you read Carlile interviews this is mentioned), and by not mentioning Carlile, who’s going to find the song? So the original song, in many ways, is not represented. People might not realize there’s a recording of it they can check out. And she said at the end she’d maybe call Ramirez out for a duet. I don’t think it’s ego or anything against Sara Ramirez.

  7. i didnt think sara’s performance of that song was even close to the power and emotion brandi puts in it…. on the show or on good morning america. i can see why she didn’t credit brandi with the song, brandi did not write it. BUT, i think she should have tossed the name out with the bass player so that people could find the original song if they wanted. most singers in bands do NOT write the songs, just the lyrics, and sometimes not even that. but when people cover their songs, they give credit to the whole band. maybe because the whole band isnt called just one person’s name. who knows. but seriously, when she said the bass players name i was like, wait, brandi covered this song too, its not even hers? then i had to look it all up.

  8. totally agree with y’all…. no need to mention Brandi at all. Sara nails it every time. I am not sure which one I prefer… have to listen to it back to back but Sara makes it her own and she’s freakin’ amazing.

  9. hey jonesy

    way to go google crazy!
    hey the only reason you were able to find all of that useless information is because at some point in time all of those peoples names were MENTIONED ;-)

    maybe while you were researching songwriters and “pouring your heart and soul” into your search….you might have looked into the fact that brandi and the twins aka tim and phil hanseroth are a band who write all songs as a trio.
    regardless of who is credited as writer.. its a brandi carlile song.

    sara rocks! I agree…but jealousy lies with the one who didnt want the artists name involved in her version so that it wouldnt affect sales by people “googling” her name and having to chose.

    brandi carlile is a part of your community and facing these issues everyday…

    thanks for reading.

    • @commonsense,
      I didn’t google it – I didn’t have time to follow up on what I’d typed so some of it may be incorrect – that’s why I noted it. My coworker and I came up with names of performers on our own. We actually came up with more songs but that was the one we had a longer list of names for. We are both music lovers and he has a photographic memory so I trusted the names he told me. Way to call me out. Go you.

      If Carlisle was the writer, she would’ve been noted. However, the other guy wrote it. If his brother co-wrote, he would also have been listed. But ‘Phil’ is the only one listed as writer (I DID google that).

      Unfortunately, Carlisle is one of the performers of the song, it’s not “hers”. It is a Phil Hanseroth song. Songs belong to the writers.