It is bright and early on a Tuesday morning so you know what that means! It means it is time to check in with Mr. Josh Grider.
WHO AM I TO SAY?
I’ve been spouting off opinions and telling you how I see things without really letting you know what my story is. Some of you know, but for those who don’t…here you go!
JOSH GRIDER: A BRIEF MUSICAL HISTORY
1980-1998. Head filled with all the best of 70s, 80s, 90s country, lots of Beach Boys, some hip-hop, heavy metal, jazz, and classical music. A diverse foundation was poured on what would become my musical house. And it’s still under construction.
1998. My first band ever was called Soular, and that’s not a misspelling. While you are laughing I’ll go ahead and tell you I was in a barbershop quartet too. Hey, I heard Cory Morrow was a cheer leader, I’m just glad it was all pre-youtube. Soular, as if I even need to say it, was a jazz combo. While it wasn’t the dream first band, the three non jazz songs we did that I got to sing (King Of The Road, All Along The Watchtower, The Joker) got me hooked on being in a band…big time. We never toured, played out a handful of times, and did not win the senior talent show.
2000-2003. My second band ever was really what I’d call my first band. We were called Riverside Blues, but ended up dropping the Blues as to avoid confusing our fifteen fans and the 5 bars we were begging for gigs. Why? Well, we weren’t a blues band.
Riverside was my college band and a lot like being in love for the first time. I assumed it would last forever, we were destined for glory despite the odds, and we believed we had the most special thing ever. In our day we garnered far more than 15 fans, made a couple of albums, played a lot of gigs and showed our Baylor classmates a good time at places like the Waco’s own Continental Cowboy (best bar name ever), 101 Mill Street, and Scruffy Murphy’s. We toured a little bit, but not to extensively. Riverside ended shortly after college.
2004-2006. My third band ever consisted of Riverside band mates that hung on after college and guitarist Kris Farrow, it would eventually include other drummers and bassists, you know who you are and I love all but one of you. We called ourselves the Josh Grider Band, because I really thought that giving the band credit is important. I still do, but when the money runs out and you lose your band and all your posters say Josh Grider Band it confuses venues when you show up alone. All albums and posters since have just said Josh Grider. Keep it simple. I should have learned from the Riverside Blues experience. I never learn. We gigged all over Texas and recorded one full length, self-titled album.
2007-2010. I recorded Million Miles To Go in 2007 and that album really led to my fourth band ever–The Josh Grider Trio. The JG3 EP and Sweet Road To Ride were recorded in this time frame as well. The JG3 was the most fun, farthest touring (only time to play NYC), lowest maintenance group ever. Especially the incarnation of Jeff Botta, Chris Grady, and me. For the fans and talent buyers, I’m afraid, it seemed yet another step in the direction of confusing. It was not a Texas-Country-Rock thing that was so popular and successful for many of my amigos, it was a sort of jazzy, harmony driven, funky three piece outfit. Reasons why we never really crossed fully into the hearts and minds of the general Red Dirt fan base are many, but making kick ass music was NOT one of them. Best trio gig ever…Rowdy Float Trip 2010. All the love to Radio Free Texas.
2011-present. I played acoustic shows for a while after the dissolution of the the Trio and made a bunch of trips up to Nashville dipping my toe in that pond. I was met with encouragement from a few key folks who helped me decide moving up here was a good idea. In May of 2011 the Griders headed for Nashville. Since moving I was honored to record a Live At Billy Bob’s album in the summer of ’11, and then eleven months into our Tennessee adventure I secured my first publishing/recording deal with a new venture that Tim Dubois (wiki him) was starting. Thank you Wade Bowen and Scott Kernahan. This has been one of my biggest musical honors to date.
So…I’ve been around for a little while. I don’t know what it’s like at the top, but I sure know what it’s like to survive in the music business. I make my living playing shows in Texas, writing songs in Tennessee, and mooching off my wife. I’m about to record a new EP (my seventh time into the studio, not to mention 2 live albums)…and it looks like I’m gonna even be on TV this fall.
These are my credential. I’m only offering opinion, as Rita does daily, but I prefer folks who have opinions, regardless of whether I agree or not. I find it hard to trust people with no opinion at all. You can keep finding me here as long as Rita will have me.
Feel free to holler at me: firstname.lastname@example.org
ps. Please pardon poor punctuation, and excessive alliteration,,,and unintended rhyming. But seriously, I just read these out loud to my wife and fix what I see before I send them over. Proofreading has never been my strong suit.
pss. All the albums mentioned are available on iTunes.