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The WDVX Blue Plate Special – 6/8 – Grant Langston

June 8 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

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For Grant Langston it all started in the tiny town of Hartselle, AL — north Alabama bedroom town focused on family, God and football. Langston grew up with a firm set of lessons in “real” country music. “My dad loved classic country, and I’m not talking about 1960’s and 1970’s, I’m talking the Carter Family, Sons of Pioneers, and guys like Merle Travis. I think when country music got to be about cheating and drinking, my dad was like, “Enough of that!” But it was all around, and learning to play music was also in the water at the Langston house.

“My mom played the piano and sang in the church choir and I really didn’t have any choice in the matter. Church choir at 6. Trombone in the band at 9. Guitar at 10. Piano at 12. It sounds forced, and it was strongly suggested, but I loved it too. REALLY loved it.”

Fast forward 10 years after, a degree from Auburn University and Langston set his sights on making music full-time. He moved to Los Angeles just to time for hair metal. After a stint playing in a variety of sunset strip rock bands and as a sideman for artist showcases, he had moment of crisis. “I was primarily a guitarist for most of the 1990’s – playing in bands and writing rock music for various singers. Once on a drive across country I picked up Nebraska in Pittsburgh and as I drove to New York City I just listened over and over. This is what I want to do. That experience made it clear to me that what I was running from was my past, the country music and the songs that I grew up with.”

He jumped in with both feet. The Los Angeles roots scene was largely hidden from mainstream view, but it was there. Lucinda Williams was breaking out. Randy Weeks, I See Hawks in LA, The Sweethearts of the Rodeo weekly show, and a collection of encouraging fellow players made it a great place to grow and learn. “I just started hanging out and making friends, and playing where ever I could. There were so many shows that a pretty good musician could use to get the reps to get better.”

From there things got very interesting. Four tours of Europe, six records, solo and band tours around the US, videos and music in TV and Film. Today Langston finds himself a veteran of the scene he’s helped nurture for twenty years. “I still believe that for an artist the community is the most important piece of the puzzle. It can be tempting to skulk off to a farm in the country, but it’s the ways you are nurtured and pushed by other artists, that’s where the magic is for me.”


June 8
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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301 S. Gay Street
Knoxville, TN 37902 United States
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