10 Questions with ... Austin Webb
August 11, 2013
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Austin Webb is signed to Streamsound Records, the Nashville-based label founded by Grammy award-winning producer Byron Gallimore (Tim McGraw, Faith Hill, Sugarland) and veteran industry exec Jim Wilkes. The newcomer is gearing up for the release of a new single called, Slip On By. The song is a sentimental ballad that stresses the value of time and not living in regret. This harmonious tune plucks on the heartstrings of growing older and emphasizes the importance of not letting time "slip on by." Country Weekly named Austin as "One To Watch in 2013." He is a Greenville, S.C., native and Nashville resident. Austin's music straddles the line between the two genres he grew up listening to most: Country and Soul. Citing influences like Joe Cocker, Otis Redding, Bill Withers, Guy Clark, Bob Dylan and Townes Van Zandt. He has been touring the country visiting radio stations in support of the launch of his new music. For more information on Austin Webb, visit www.AustinWebbMusic.com.
1. Austin, your current single is "Slip On By" - Can you tell us a little bit about how the song came about and the reaction you are getting from radio and listeners?
I've written every song I've recorded, except for this one. I heard "Slip On By" while listening to the radio one day. After hearing it, I pulled over to the side of the road with tears in my eyes. I immediately called my producer and sent him the song. A month later, someone came up to Byron at his daughter's softball game and pitched him the same song. He called me and we decided to cut it immediately. Country radio has been very positive and very responsive. It hits home for everyone who listens to county music. I'm very proud and blessed to have this song.
2. How would you describe your music to someone who has never seen or heard you perform?
I always tell people country soul. I grew up listening to Elvis, Kris Kristofferson and Motown, so you can definitely feel those vibes when I perform or when you hear the record.
3. You kind of wound up in Nashville on a spontaneous road trip. Could you tell us a little about that trip and what made it so significant to you that made you want to return?
My girlfriend at the time and I had an argument and so I drove in the middle of the night straight from South Carolina to Johnny Cash's grave, which is in Hendersonville, Tennessee. I got there at 4 a.m. and sang to Johnny and June for about and hour. The next day, I was playing Patsy Cline on a Waffle House jukebox. There, I met Charlie Louvin and he invited me to open up for him that night! It was nuts.
4. I've heard you have a prized Martin guitar. Can you tell us the story of your faithful six-string?
I paid $350 for my guitar about 10 years ago. It was brand new. It's now really worn down and extremely faithful. It has its own sound and has autographed 8x10 photos of Kris Kristofferson and Guy Clark taped onto the back.
5. Who and what are some of the big influences in your music?
I have a lot. I'd say Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker, Elvis, The Beach Boys, Bob Dylan, Janis Ian, Tom T. Hall, Otis Redding, Billy Preston and Motown.
6. You won the "Nashville Connection" songwriting competition. Can you tell us a little about that experience and what that meant for your career?
My mamma told me to enter this contest after I had heard about it. I sent a song, got in the finals and played a song I wrote by my self called " Even Angels Fall" and won the competition. The next day I quit my job building cars and packed up my car with a few boxes and my guitar and drove to Nashville to live.
7. You have a long list of songwriting "heroes" - could you tell us a few of them?
Kris Kristofferson, Tom T Hall, Conor Oberst, Tom Douglas, James Slater, Mark Irwin, Jay Knowles , and Jake Mitchell are among my favorites.
8. Where do you go or what do you turn to when you want to listen to music in your down time?
I usually listen to Sixto Rodriguez, WSIX or classical music. Anything that's just chill and relaxing.
9. You have a few tattoos - could you tell us the story behind them?
Ha, yes I have several. I have a sleeve on my left arm consisting of many things: a microphone with Patsy Cline's name in it, a rose, a keyboard, a harmonica, anchors, waves, clouds, my old basset hound Archie. My favorite tattoo is my Tom T. Hall one on my right arm that says "old dogs, children and watermelon wine."
10. What can we expect to hear from you in the future and even on your album, which is due out later this year?
I try not to worry or think about the future too much. Right now, I'm focused on today, this week and getting my second single out there to the fans and making it a successful record.
1. What are some of your hobbies when you aren't on the road or writing and playing music?
I watch a lot of Netflix, read, watch the NFL Network, draw, talk to my folks and workout.
2. What are some of your all-time favorite songs?
- "Here Comes That Rainbow Again" - Kris Kristofferson
- "Louisiana 1927" - Randy Newman
- "Never Going Back Again" - Fleetwood Mac
3. What junk food can we find lying around while you are on the road?
I try to stay away from junk as much as possible, but who can resist sweet tea and salt and vinegar chips?!