Why country music ?
~ The first thing that drew me to country music and most of the music I listen to is the story telling aspect. I also love its roots in the blues and the instrumentation with steel guitar, fiddles and big harmonies. And then as I started listening and playing it and making attempts to write country songs, it became pretty hard for me to not be fascinated by the history and mythological type stories you hear about artist or songwriters and what they went through in their careers.
If everything would be possible (waking the dead included) , which two people should sing the ultimate country duet?
~ There’s tons of great country duets happening today, really anything Prine has done on his last two duet records has been amazing, aslo I’m a big fan of the Randy Rogers and Wade Bowen record. But if I was gonna bring anyone back from he dead I think I’d have to bring back George Jones and Merle Haggard. I’ll never forget the first time I heard those two singing “the way I am” and they did great duets with whoever they sang with so its a win win.
What song you ever recorded means the most to you and why?
~ I would have to say its the tilt”, one of the last songs on our new record. It was a song that we recorded in one day in a completely different style than the rest of the tracks on the record. It was the last song I wrote for the album and I wrote it differently than most of my other songs. And the beginning lyrics were inspired by the events of the flood in Columbia, SC in 2015 and changed into something more personal than I had expected it to be. But once we got in the studio to do the song it took on this life of its own but at the same time came out sounding exactly how I wanted it too. It was just a very unique experience.
Who would you like to write a song for you?
~ If we can still wake the dead its gotta be guy clark or Townes Van Zandt. But if we are only going for the living I’d have to say John Prine… Or Jackson Browne. Thats a tough one.
What is the one thing that readers/fans would be surprised to know about you?
~ I was in school for a degree in education of the deaf and hard of hearing and minoring in classical guitar when I decided to start really trying my hand at songwriting and playing live music.
Give us one country song you never want to hear on radio anymore and tell us why.
~ FLA/GA Line “Cruise” I wasn’t a fan of the song to begin with and there was a long period of time where you couldn’t get in a car, walk into a bar or a venue or a restaurant without hearing it, and of course various renditions of Wagon Wheel.
What is the question interviewers never seem to ask you and…you wish they would? (Please provide your answer as well.)
~ Which Hank Williams do you prefer? Sr. Jr. or III? Definitely Sr.
Describe the ultimate recording studio (not the technique but the facilities)
~ I would want to have a kind of a “Big Pink” setup like “The Band” did in upstate NY. Just a house with a lot of character and set it up to have its own mood and live recording space where you could capture a lot of that raw live emotion in a studio setting. An open creative space to let the songs grow.
Johnny or June ?
~ Johnny, I love June but listening to Johnny got me into so much other classic country and all other kinds of great music.
Are you still nervous before going on stage and if so, do you use any “rituals” to calm you nerves.
~ I don’t really get nervous anymore. I used to get nervous in front of larger crowds but that went away fairly quickly. When you start really letting yourself enjoy it you don’t think about nerves as much. Maybe debuting new songs live. I still get a little anxious before that.
What was the most memorable day in your musical career and tell us why.
~ The first time we played the Purple Fiddle in Thomas, WV. It’s this incredible venue that used to be an old general store that has live music all day everyday in the middle of the mountains. With no TV and barely any internet or cell service. The people that came through were just all about the music and art. It was one of the more relaxing and rewarding musical experiences I’ve ever had.