Kevin Myers and the TMA
Another artist to be interviewed is Kevin Myers who is nominated in the category of the Rising Star Award. It was great for him to take time to be interviewed by the underwriter and Now Public.
1. Where you were born and how did you get started ?
I was born in Corpus Christi, TX and grew up near there in the little town of Alice, TX. After High School, I moved north to San Marcos, TX for college. I learned to play guitar in High School but never really took it seriously. At a party in college I ran into a guy named Wayne Hubbard, who was playing his guitar and singing songs he had written. He had recently dropped out college in Huntsville, TX and moved down to San Marcos to try and start his music career. I sat down and played along with him. He asked if I wanted to play some shows with him. We auditioned for our first gig the next week and spent the next few years playing around the state. One happy hour at Cheatham Street Warehouse, I met a songwriter named Jason Wade. He gave me a copy of Townes Van Zandt's "Live at the Old Quarter". After listening to it that same night, I wrote my first song and I have not stopped since. I started playing my own shows around then, about 8 years ago.
2. What were your musical influences during your career?
The greatest three songwriters to ever live: Townes Van Zandt, John Prine, and Guy Clark.
3. Your debut album "Horseshoe" has been a success. Lucky Boyd has given you a positive review and after hearing parts of the CD, I am impressed with its down to earth quality. How long did it take you to work on the debut album?
My brother-in-law, Rick Green, is an author and public speaker. He wrote a book called "Freedom's Frame" and suggested I write a song about the current state of the union. I wrote the song a couple days later, recorded it on the laptop, and gave it to Rick. He played it for a few people, who then arranged for me to play it at 10,000 seat venues in Oregon and Colorado. It would have been foolish not to have a CD to sell with such a large captive audience. The problem was I only had a couple months till showtime and had nothing professionally recorded. I sent some songs to Rich Brotherton, who runs a studio called Ace Recording in Austin, TX. In addition to being a phenomenal producer, Brotherton plays lead guitar for the Robert Earl Keen band. I had always been a fan, so I was very exited when he agreed to work with me. He only had two weeks open during the necessary time frame. We were able to record the entire CD, "Horseshoe", start to mastered finish in 13 days. It was a marathon, but an incredible experience. I had just enough time to get the artwork done and have "Horseshoe" printed before heading out of state to play. I was fortunate enough to nearly sell out of my first thousand CDs in the first 2 shows.
4. In "Horseshoe", the music and the storyteller evokes an era when the music in Texas as well as America was pure. Why have we abandoned our musical traditions and what can be done to recover them as you have done with your debut album?
I think the trend in music has followed the culture downward. The greatest generation seems to be gone. I think people are spoiled and driven by instant gratification more than we used to be. We have had to sacrifice less, so we appreciate less. In turn, we have less to feel, less to say, and music becomes more of a business. Those calling the shots are typically not artists. Those who decide what is "marketable" don't create. This is why the Independent music scene is so important, because its unaffected nature preserves our musical traditions.
5. It appears that you have toured or are touring in Texas, Oregon, and Colorado. Do you have plans to go on tours in other areas of the country or even abroad?
I accept opportunities as they come, but don’t market myself too much or try to fill up the calendar. I am married, want to have a family soon, and am content with my day job. With that said, my ultimate dream would be to write songs full time, but on my own terms. Kind of like Bruce Robison and Guy Clark have done. That would be the life.
6. What can Kevin Myers offer that the Hollywood Establishment and other "mainstream" media cannot offer?
I would like to think I can offer authenticity. I don't try to force songwriting. I don't have any deadlines or guidelines. I just write the songs down when they choose to come and I don't view it as a job.
7. You recorded in your album "Freedom's Frame" and "Outlaw Ways", What was the purpose and significance in these two songs?
I wrote “Outlaw Ways” when I first started writing. It was meant to be a redemption song that everyone can feel through their own faults and failures, but disguised as a classic tale of the forlorn outlaw. I originally wrote it without the chorus, but the chorus found its way in. “Freedom’s Frame” is a call for people to re-examine the founding principles that made this country great and a reminder that the government derives its powers from the consent of the governed, not the other way around. Whenever government becomes destructive "we the people" have the right and the duty to alter or abolish it.
8. What was your initial reaction when your received the news about being nominated for an Award by the TMA [Texas Music Academy]?
I was honored. I never anticipated recording a CD this year, let alone being nominated for an award. I think the Boyd's seem like genuine people and I like what they have done with www.mytexasmusic.com. They focus, first and foremost, on quality of music rather than popularity.
9. What is your recommendation to those who want to follow in your footsteps and become a singer and musician?
Don't rush it. If it is meant to happen it will happen. Listen to the songs that inspire you and try to write songs like that. Don’t record an album until your songs sound like your own and your individual style has fully developed.
10. Where can people buy "Horsehoe"?
You can download it on Itunes, or link to purchase physical copies at my website www.kevinmyersmusic.com. The following online retailers are selling it: www.cdbaby.com or www.mytexasmusic.com.
Thank you for the questions and your time.
For me, it is a pleasure and honor.