Austin English

Monday, November 3, 2014

By Kate Kinder
Editor in Chief 

Mr. Austin English of Elgin, TX and College Station, TX of the Austin English band .His hobbies include Fishing, collecting vinyl records, hanging out with his family and seeing movies.

Are you currently touring? If so with who?
“We are touring! Usually it's just us and if there is an opener the venue tends to pick them. However we aren't doing any major out of state tours this year. Our bassist just had a new baby and he's the stay at home dad so we work around that.”

Who all have you toured with?
“I wouldn't say toured but we have done shows with some really cool people; Ray Wylie Hubbard, Bart Crow, Pat Green, Shenandoah. We could be here for a minute it I listed them all. Haha” (Kate note: I love Shenandoah with a passion I still have their greatest hits on my phone!!)

When and why did you start playing?
“When I was in 8th grade I went to a tiny school in Coupland, TX. Our history teacher also played guitar and so it was offered as an elective. So a few of us got free lessons 5 days a week for a year.”

Which instruments do you play?
“I mainly play guitar but... I can play really awful drums too!”

What drives your passion?
“Probably the simple fact that I get to play guitar and sing for a living! It's something I am eternally grateful for.”
Where do you usually gather songwriting inspiration? What is your usual songwriting process?
“Well I used to write songs in the middle of class when I would get bored but that wasn't helping my grades. Now I usually get an idea while driving and I make Siri take a note so I don't lose the line or chorus or whatever comes to me.”

What was the first songs you learned?
 “Does Fort Worth Ever Cross Your Mind - George Strait. My dad gave me an old song book of George's songs. Seemed like a good place to start.”
Is your family musical?
 “Yes! My Mom played in the high school band and sang in church for a while when I was growing up. My dad could sing really well, he played some guitar and he was in a garage band as a drummer in high school. My uncle was actually in a band that was on American Bandstand. My Grandpa (Mom's Dad) was probably the most persistent. He was a recording artist and traveled all over with his band. I actually have his vinyl he recorded at my mom's house”.

Which famous musicians do you admire? Why?
“Tom Petty. You can't put him in one box and say he's this or he's that. He's rock but he's also country and then when you think you have him figured out he comes out of left field with something totally different.
John Mayer is another one. He can write and sing and play and do all of them so well!”
Which famous musicians have you learned from?
“Well John Mayer and Tom Petty were obvious choices lol. But I also have admired Johnny Cash and Bob Dylan and those musicians who kept putting our music and not caring who liked it and who didn't. They kept writing and recording and they had something to say.”

What are your fondest musical memories?
“Things like my first gig (16 years old), The first time we played out of state, The time I turned down opening for Turnpike Troubadours because I didn't know who they were yet lol.:
Were you influenced by old records & tapes?
“Well I actually was given all the vinyl my parents had when I started collecting. There's a few in there that I really like, but the tapes were what influenced me the most. The four bands I remember vividly playing were Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers Greatest Hits, any Chris LeDoux album, The Mavericks What a Crying Shame and various George Strait albums. My parents all listened to great music though. So I picked up Springsteen and Zepplin and The Eagles too.”
Who are your favorite musicians?
“Dave Grohl is probably at the top. There isn't an instrument he can't play, he produced Zac Brown's last album and he produced and directed Sound City.”
“Stevie Ray Vaughn and B.B. King are up there too. I can listen to them play guitar for hours.”

What is a typical week like for you?
“Wake up at 11, do the social media stuff, eat lunch at a few places, talk to my agent about upcoming shows, go to the once class I take to keep me in school haha, make sure the band has the details for upcoming shows that week, add new songs to my Spotify playlist, come home and write songs mixed with lots of Netflix, check on my little sister who also lives here. “

What's your favorite thing about being on the road?
“I like going new places, but my favorite thing is the anticipation of the show that night, the jokes and stories that get told and the new songs everybody wants to show you lol. We fight over that aux. cord pretty hard lol.”

What's the funniest thing that's happened on the road?
“I don't think there is one specific thing... More like five or six tied for first place.
In no particular order they are titled as follows: The Hotbox, OKC Hooker, Wyoming, Buck Naked Jesus and The Finger incident of 2010.”

Best place to eat while on the road?
“Waffle House or Mexican Food! Subway if you want something healthy while driving.”

What's the best town play in?
“Whichever one we are in at the time! They all have something different to offer. Whether it's the history of the Fort Worth Stockyards or the Hospitality of Doug and Family when we play at tiny Oakwood, TX at the Rusty Cactus.”

Since everyone was a startup once, can you give any smaller or local bands looking to get gigs and airplay some tips?
“Don't worry about money until you have to. Play every free and $20 gig that you can at first. Some of the best shows I've had have come from playing a free show. Also, don't be cheap when you record. Save up and record something great. Even if it's once song it's a good sounding song!”

Our album "Crazy" comes out on Tuesday. It will be available at all online outlets and at our shows.

Thank you so much Austin!

xxx West Texas Sweetheart

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