Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
- Posted on Mar 15th 2010 9:14PM by Anneliese Curtis Place
It was three years ago when Austin local Joe Lewis was booked with his friend Zach Ernst to open for Little Richard, and not long after to start a rock 'n' roll band called Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears. The band has since grown to seven members including, Joe Lewis, Zach Ernst, Bill Stevenson, Matt Strmiska, Ian Varley, and the Hard Proof Honeybear Horns (Jason Frey, Derek Phelps, Joe Woullard). Singing about women and a blend of other things that make great music they toured across the USA, Canada and Europe. Their debut full length album, Tell 'Em What Your Name Is!, was released last March on Lost Highway Records. Joe Lewis talked to Spinner about playing SXSW as Austin's Band of the Year.
How old were you when you picked up your first guitar?
When I was about 19 or 20, I was working in this pawn shop and all these guys would bring in guitars. One day, I started playing around with one and took it home and started teaching myself how to play. I play harmonica too.
Describe your sound in your own words.
I call it rock 'n' roll. I don't evaluate my music, I just like what I play. I just call it rock and roll ya know?
How did your band form?
I met Zach the guitar player first and we would just hang out and listen to music with the rest of the guys from our college. We just decided to start a band one day, practiced and started playing gigs and it just kind of snow balled from there.
What are your musical influences?
I like James Brown and Lightnin' Hopkins. The Stooges, I like all kinds of stuff. Elmore James, Don Covay, Sharon Jones and the Sonics.
How did you come up with your band name?
Somebody just threw it out there randomly at a practice and it was cool. I had never heard anybody with that name so we took that.
What's in your festival survival kit?
A lot of patience, and money to be at SXSW.
Who was your first celeb crush?
Nia Long off of 'The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.'
What's your musical guilty pleasure?
Micheal McDonald, Hall and Oats -- all that type of junk.
Beatles or Stones?
Stones. They are just cooler, I have never been too much of a Beatles fan, they are too wimpy.
What's the craziest thing you've seen or experienced while on tour?
Driving down the freeway to get to the next show and there is this RV towing a car, the whole back of it caught on fire. Going up to the redwood forest in California, that was crazy cool too.
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