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Bill Abernathy Interview by Christian Lamitschka for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show

Bill Abernathy Interview by Christian Lamitschka for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show

Lamitschka:  Music has many new fans throughout Europe who may be hearing about you for the first time. How would you describe yourself and the music you play to someone who has never seen or heard you?

Answer:  Storytelling in song. I am a singer songwriter who translates real life events and personal interactions into songs that not only tell the story, but also include a bit of learnings I pick up from each experience. I have a little mantra that says “If you hear a song that sounds like it was written about you, it may have been.”

Lamitschka:  How was the last year for you? What were your highlights?

Answer:  With the release of Crossing Willow Creek, the past few months have been very fun and very busy. We have been fortunate to have dozens of interviews, radio and television opportunities. It’s a bit of work, but so much fun.

Lamitschka:  What is your latest CD and how's it doing?

Answer:  Our latest release is Crossing Willow Creek. We are quite proud of the project, and based on our response to date, folks are really enjoying our music. We’ve been fortunate to receive airplay all over the globe and appear on many music charts. It’s exciting for me to know that so many people all over the globe listen to and enjoy what we do. It actually quite humbling as well. Thanks to all of you.

Lamitschka:  How did you choose the title for the CD?  Is there a story behind the name?

Answer:  The title song for Crossing Willow Creek is a tune I wrote several years ago called Willow Creek. The song really documents how I originally got into music and how it has changed my life. The story of the album title is really about that song. Originally recorded purely acoustic, we changed the production of Willow Creek as well as many other tunes, giving each tune a different musical voice. This was a very interesting process, and we really like the outcome. The title Crossing Willow Creek is documenting our transition from purely acoustic music like Willow Creek, into a more produced and differently voiced product.

Lamitschka:  Do you write the songs yourself? If not, how do you go about finding the songs for your CD?

Answer:  I write all my own tunes, sometimes with a co-writer. We also choose a few select cover tunes and include them on all our projects. Crossing Willow Creek has tunes written by me, songs co-written with my son Chad and other friends, as well as tunes from Dan Fogelberg and Jimmy Spheeris. We pride ourselves in our musical versatility and covering songs from such great artists is always special for me.

Lamitschka:  Please tell us about the songs on your album (influences, etc).

Answer:  Crossing Willow Creek has 11 tunes. They range is genre from Country to Rock to Blues to Folk. Each song I special to me and are recorded in the genre that best accentuates the lyrics and the story behind the song. I could spend all day telling each of the stories, but what I find interesting is to hear what our fans think of the stories they hear and then share with me what they think the tune is about. Each tune may mean something different to each fan and hearing their stories is very interesting for me.
Lamitschka:  Your current single is being played by radio. What do you feel is special about this song that makes people want to hear it?

Answer:  Our current single is named Changes. It talks about various changes that have occurred in my life. We recorded 3 verses of the tune, but I think there may be about 50 based on how many changes have occurred in my life. Change is the one constant in each of our lives, and how we react and adapt to each of those changes really helps define who we are. As the tune says, “Change always teaches us to be everything we’re destined to be.”

Lamitschka:  What will your next single be?

Answer:  Our first single from Crossing Willow Creek was a rocker called Cry Wolf. Changes is a country rock tune. Our next release will be from my softer side, a beautiful love song called Meant to Be. It took me about 30 years to write Meant To Be, so it’s only fair that it gets its chance to be heard by bigger audiences.
Lamitschka:  What is your favorite song among all the songs you have recorded and what's the story behind it?

Answer:  That is really not a fair question, haha. I think each song has a life and a meaning of its own with a special place in my heart for each. Our tune Willow Creek is really special to me as I flashback to where music started for me and discuss what all that means to me. I would say it’s “one” of my favorites. lol

Lamitschka:  How much creative control do you have over your music?

Answer:  I have full control of everything we do. That said I would be remiss to not mention the other great artists I am blessed to work with. Max Berry, Rick Yord, Paul Roberts, Jaisson Taylor, Lynn Allred. Each of these fantastic musicians have input into what we create in our finished product. I would be silly to not listen to their ideas and implement them into our tunes.

Lamitschka:  There's a lot of work that goes into a number one hit. What did it take to make it in your case?

Answer:  We have been fortunate to have one single hit #1. It’s from our Find A Way album and played in the Folk Genre. It’s a very introspective love song called Goodbye Will Never Come Again. In that song is a confession, and apology and a promise that Goodbye Will Never Come Again. The hard part of that tune is really the introspection into my thoughts and actions, realizing that I have made some terrible mistakes over the years regarding personal relationships. Bringing those thoughts to light, and then working through the various emotions associated with them was a very enlightening time. I learned a lot about myself writing that song. Oh and its really pretty, did I mention that? haha
Lamitschka:  Most careers don't last as long as yours.  What's given your career the staying power?

Answer: I was reading an article recently about a famous cello player who is over 90 years old. He still practices several hours a day. When asked why he simply said, “I think I am making progress” That to me was perfect. To continually challenge yourself to improve is such a statement to longevity in your career.

Christian Lamitschka ( Ch.Lamitschka@t-online.de ) for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show

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