Featured Artist Of The Week – Brian Burns

Bio:

Brian Burns has, for many years, been regarded as one of Texas’ top performing songwriters, his work having been covered by a number of legendary artists. But over the past few years, Brian has emerged as one of his state’s most powerful and engaging performers. His songs explore both the poignant and the humorous sides of humanity, drawing out the things we’ve all felt and wish we could have said. The warmth, wit, and eclecticism of his performances captivate audiences night after night.

Brian grew up in Central Texas listening to the western ballads of Marty Robbins and the “progressive country” music of Willie Nelson and Waylon Jennings. Early on, he developed an appreciation for musical depth, along with a knack for “the story”. As his passion for music grew, he began to explore a variety of styles ranging from pop to reggae. At age 16, Brian hit the road on a musical journey that would eventually find him sharing stages with some of America’s top performers.

Brian’s Texas roots remained an integral force in his life and work. After his first million-or-so miles of rough road and half-a-lifetime of impressive musical accomplishments – yet not much to show for it, Brian planted those roots firmly back in Lone Star soil. “Music’s not a choice I made, I believe the choice made me,” declared Brian in the title cut of his debut solo album, “Highways, Heartaches, and Honky-Tonks”, a 1997 work which summarized his musical mission up to that point. His second album, 1999’s “Angels & Outlaws”, produced the venomous, yet humorous Texan anthem, “Welcome To Texas (Now Don’t Forget To Go Back Home)” which dominated FM heavy rotation lists in the nation’s largest country music markets for many months. But “Angels & Outlaws” also met critical acclaim and enlightened a discriminating listening audience to a more intellectual and introspective side of Brian Burns.

Brian’s 2001 release, “The Eagle & The Snake: Songs Of The Texians”, presented an epic collection of classic, contemporary, and original ballads based on the history, folklore, and culture of Texas. “The Eagle & The Snake” was heralded by reviewers as a masterpiece shortly after its release, and went on to become an established Texas classic. The album’s first single, “I’ve Been Everywhere (In Texas)” spread like wildfire throughout Texas and achieved unprecedented success, charting nationally for five weeks on R&R (Radio & Records). The single, “Evangelina” remains in the Top 10 of the Texas Music Chart.

Nothing ignites a young mind’s historical interest more effectively (and infectiously) than songs and stories that bring past events stirringly back to life. Over the summer of 2003 Brian adapted “The Eagle & The Snake: Songs Of The Texians” into an educational program for 4th and 7th-grade students of Texas history. This program has become the state’s premier educational presentation for K-12 Social Studies curriculum enhancement, taking Brian’s musical and storytelling talents into elementary and intermediate schools throughout Texas.

Brian’s latest album release, “Heavy Weather”, introduces a collection of 12 new Brian Burns compositions and 4 exciting new cover songs. Ranging from the historical ballads that have become integral to Brian’s work to substantive country, folk, pop, and Celtic styles, “Heavy Weather” is all about thunderstorms, shipwrecks, hurricanes, heartaches… all the storms of life… and no one tells the story like Brian Burns.

More and more people are discovering Brian Burns, “The Last True Texas Troubador”, an artist who, for many years, was considered one of Texas’ best-kept secrets. The Terry Awards, a long-standing institution recognizing excellence and accomplishment in Texas music, has presented Brian its “Top Solo Artist” award. Rockzilla.net, a popular online electronic community dedicated to Texas Music, voted Brian “Texas Artist of The Year” for two consecutive years. Brian performs an average of 300 shows a year including solo performances and songwriter shows with some of the country’s top performing singer/songwriters

Interview:

TRD: Who do you consider your influences?

BB: My influences range from Marty Robbins to Rush… Merle Haggard, Jimmy

Webb, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, Waylon Jennings… Too many to list.

 

TRD: What was your first Gig?

BB: My first gig was playing drums at Shakey’s Pizza Parlor in Waco, TX when

I was in my early teens.

 

TRD: What groups or singers do you listen to now?

BB: It varies from week to week.  This week, The Amazing Rhythm Aces, Bruce

Springsteen, Al Stewart, Trout Fishing In America.

 

TRD:  What is your favorite venue you have performed at? Why?

BB: Favorite venue also varies from year to year.  Right now, I’d say maybe

The Silver K Café in Johnson City; great atmosphere, fine listening room.

 

TRD: If you could perform only 1 more show, anywhere in the world, where would you want to play? Why?

BB: My own beer joint; I’d build it, open it, play my last gig there, retire

– then book other artists I enjoy.

 

TRD:  What is your favorite song you have recorded? Why?

BB: My favorite is always something recent, so on my current CD, “Border

Radio”, it’s a song called “Rainin’ In Juarez”.

 

TRD: When you’re not performing what do you like to do with your spare time?

BB: When I’m not performing, I’m buying and restoring pinball machines.

 

TRD: If you could perform with any other artist, who would you like to share the stage with? Why?

BB: I’d be afraid to perform with any of my heroes that I haven’t met,

because I’ve met some of them and have been highly disappointed.

Discography:

  • Highways, Heartaches, & Honky-Tonks (1997)
  • Angels & Outlaws (1999)
  • The Eagle & The Snake: Songs Of The Texians (2001)
  • Heavy Weather (2004)
  • Border Radio (2006)

 

 

Tour:

Go to http://www.brianburnsmusic.com/schedule.htm to see Brian’s full schedule!

 

Enjoy! And check back next week when our featured artist is Deana Carter

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Published in: on October 26, 2007 at 4:22 am  Comments (4)  

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Wow, what a great new artist. I really look forward to hearing more about Brian Burns. I will definitely look forward to picking up his new album. Is he on Lonestar 92.5? I think it’s my favorite station here that stays true to Texas music–and they don’t have as many of those stupid commercials. Not only that, but they seem to have a really great variety, covering Alternative Country, Classic Rock, and Outlaw Country. If you haven’t listened to them, you should check them out at http://www.lonestar925.com for more info. I work with them in the name of a true music fan so check it out!

  2. No, you won’t hear Brian on Lonestar. It’s another Clearchannel abomination. You’ll hear him on the Range (95.3) and on the Ranch (95.9) in D/FW. Go west a little, and you can catch him on Mandatory FM out of Stephenville (107.9 & 98.5)

    I’ve been a fan of his for a few years, and he’s a great show. He’s very personable, and a fantastic songwriter.

  3. can you put “Welcome to Texas” on I-Tunes? or is there another website to purchase it on??
    thanks!

  4. “Welcome to Texas” is available at LoneStar Music


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