OEB’s 5 SXSW Qs – Tim Easton
Hometown: Nashville, TN
OEB 2013 SXSW Review
Tim Easton is going to have a pretty full dance card at SXSW. In addition to a new record, Easton has a retrospective and two collaborative records on the way: a duo with Megan Palmer called Out Of Our Tree and a record with Leeroy Stagger and Evan Phillips being recorded as I type this. Easton shared some updates on his latest offerings with OEB for what is sure to be a busy trip through Austin.
Much of SXSW showcasers are new artists looking to ‘break out’. As a veteran of the conference, how has SXSW changed for you as you move along in your career?
It’s a reunion of sorts for sure. Basically, I’m coming down to celebrate a body of work already completed (Before The Revolution, on New West) and also show that I have a new record coming out, and that I’m working with Megan Palmer (violin) in a side project called Out Of Our Tree, who will be playing a few parties.
Your songs range from quiet, acoustic material to gritty burners. What draws you to both sides of this musical spectrum?
It’s all rock and roll right? Most folks that I admire do both. The Beatles, The Stones…they had beautiful acoustic ballads and also heavy rocking tunes. It’s nothing new but I can see how it might confuse some people. Basically, I’m a folky at heart, but I want to play that rock and roll too of course. It’s tough to afford a band on the road, however, so luckily I can do both.
What’s the latest on your project with Evan Phillips and Leeroy Stagger (ESP)? Given your close connection established with fans through your journal on your website, how has the Kickstarter campaign been going?
I’m writing you from Leeroy’s couch in Lethbridge, Alberta. We started our new album today. Thanks to Kickstarter, this new album with Leeroy and Evan is going to be made. We’ve got some great songs to record over the next ten days.
What’s on deck for you at SXSW this year? Is there any new solo material in the works and what direction has your songwriting been facing lately?
I’d like to have a trio with upright bass, or it could be Megan Palmer(violin) and I as a duo.
Most certainly there are new songs. I brought six new ones for the ESP sessions but we’ll narrow that down to three probably. I live in Nashville now everybody from your mailman to your barista is writing tunes. You gotta keep up, so I’m writing all the time now. Short stories too. With songs, I have been all over the place. Folky stuff and some traditional country-or bluegrass, as well. I’ve been trying to simplify my songwriting and go the Woody Guthrie route.
What you had an opportunity to check out the SXSW band list? Any artists you are excited to catch yourself?
I actually only know of all the Nashville bands that are going. Caitlin Rose is great. As is Denny and The Jets. I’m more excited to see a band that I’ve never heard of before that is going to blow my mind and inspire me to work harder. I don’t go down to hang with the same scene every year, although we manage to cross paths.