10 Questions with ... Dustin Hensley
March 4, 2012
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Like most folks my age I got into the business by interning anywhere and everywhere I could. But my "career" started at Davis Music Group in 2010. About halfway through my internship there I got hired on full time as the National Radio Promotions Coordinator. Left there, and then ended up at All Access! I mean, I basically get paid to go out, meet people, hear 'em sing, and then talk about them. It's great.
1) Welcome to All Access Dustin, what made you want to pursue a career in the music industry in the first place?
I've always loved music. No matter what was going on around with me or my life music was always a constant. Regardless of what kind of place you're at there's a song that will either help you get through something, or a song to help you remember a specific period.
2) What drew you to apply for the All Access gig when it came open?
It was honestly a random thing. I always knew of All Access and had been a follower for years. I had just left DMG and this job just fell into my lap. You know how the business is- someone knows this one guy, who knows a job here, who knows this girl, yada yada yada. I came in, interviewed and the rest is history. Regardless God saw fit for me to be here and I've been hammering down ever since.
3) As someone who is fairly new in the industry, tell us who have been some of your most important mentors so far and what's the greatest advice you have been given?
I've honestly been so blessed to have not only met so many influential people in the business, but I can honestly call them my friends- better yet my family. First off:
Gator Michaels: when I was working for him sometimes he was my boss, other days he was a friend, sometimes a Dad. Regardless he was always yelling at me about something so the lines were blurred sometimes haha. Kidding Gator! (but not really.) But I honestly owe everything to him. I really hope he doesn't read this because he'll definitely make me pay up.
Glenn Noblit: He's like a big brother to me, and he has helped me so much not only understand the business but he is constantly reminding me to not let my youth or inexperience hold me back; that I know what I am doing and I have a place in the business.
I could honestly go on and on and on and write a book but Mallory Opheim, David Haley, Brooks Quigley, Carol Hughes, Amy Jackson, Kate Greene, Samantha Stephens, seriously I could go on for days, but I'll leave it at that. OH! And of course Joel Denver, Jim Asker, Karen Goodner and Jackie Chapman. I may or may not want to be them when I grow up. Juuuust saying.
4) What was your favorite part about working with Davis Music Group?
That was my first "real" gig you know? So that was exciting. I could've been standing in the road with a DMG sign letting people throw rocks at me and I still would've thought it was the greatest thing. I was thrown into an environment where I had to sink or swim and I loved it. I like being stressed and running around. I couldn't stand waking up everyday and knowing exactly what I was going to be doing.
5) Did you always like Country music and what other types of music do you also like?
Always Country. But I grew up in the late 80's so I am obsessed with Classic Rock as well. I can't go a day without listening to some sort of Bluegrass either. My hometown actually has the "Old Time Bluegrass and Fiddlers Jamboree" every April and I'm overly in love with it. It used to be a HUGE festival but it's died down over the years. I would love to somehow get involved with it and help make it more prominent somehow. ESPECIALLY since I was crowned "Little Mr. Bluegrass" back in the day. '92 or '93 maybe? I don't know. Either way, I'm pretty much royalty. But I love folk music as well, anything that is real and honest.
6) Tell us about your background in rodeo! What were some of the awards you won and how old were you when you rode your first bull?
Well I just was always around it. Growing up on a farm that lifestyle is just sort of bred in you. I mean, the events they have in rodeo is what we had to do for a living. And I had some family members who had been professional so I just started learning from them. But it's one of those things you really have to get out and do yourself to learn. And I honestly can't remember everything I've won (I promise I don't mean that to sound as bad as it does.) But long story short I've been to everything from 4-H finals to the World Finals in various events from the time I was 5-18 years old.
7) You're from a small town in West Tennessee, right? Tell us what it was like growing up there and how many stoplights were there?
The metropolis of Holladay, TN! Haha. It was amazing. I miss it every day. There is such a simplicity there and the people are so real. Sometimes it's hard to decipher the smoke and mirrors of Nashville, but the way I was raised in Holladay definitely keeps me grounded and not get caught up in the "big city." It was Mayberry. And I'm determined to still believe it is whether it's still true or not. But to answer your question- 0 stop lights. We did good to have stop signs because people shot 'em to death.
8) What is your favorite hole in the wall in Nashville where you may take folks from out of town?
Santa's Pub! I've always rode with people there so I couldn't tell you exactly where it's at but it's incredible. I don't want to explain it though. You'll just have to come with me!
9) Your dad had a band, right? What type of group were they, and did you ever perform with them?
They were Country/ Classic Rock. It was during the whole Black Hawk, Little Texas, and line dancing days. I miss it. They were great, and were very close to signing but things happened and they decided to call it quits. And I sang "Dumas Walker" every night on the bar from when I was 3 years old until whenever they disbanded. But I started singing and playing piano early on and have performed my whole life.
10) Aside from working at All Access what would be your dream gig?
I would love to be in A&R. Eventually I want to produce, and I write as well so in the long run that's where I want to be- a songwriter. I've always been interested in "on-air personality" stuff so that's a goal as well. But for right now I'm just taking it all in and soaking up every opportunity I can.
1) Is it true that you have Amish family members and do you ever take a horse and buggy ride with them?
'Tis true haha. I don't know anything about them though. And I would give my left leg if they would come ride me around! But no, it's not happened yet.
2) What's your favorite junk food?
I'm not much on sweets but I drink more chocolate milk than any grown man should.
3) What's your favorite concert that you ever saw?
That's like asking what my favorite toe is! There's no right answer. Uh, The Avett Brothers was probably the only time I was speechless. But Lee Ann Womack does the same thing to me. I'm in love with her. (Holla at me girl!) I saw Journey one time, and that was a trip haha. I think my first concert was Sawyer Brown. They were incredible.