We last spoke with Matt Crowder in November 2016. At the time, Crowder had just finished playing on Jason Springs’s debut album, Blue Collar Bones and Busted Knuckles. Since then, he has continued to play the local scene, released a debut solo album, and is this year’s top vote-getter in the 2019 Rave Awards.
Crowder took a moment to fill us in on how his career is progressing.
SC: What have you been up to since the last time we spoke?
I’ve been busy writing, recording, and gigging. I’m coming up on my 4-year anniversary of becoming a full-time musician, and I have to say each year has been better than the last. 2018 was quite the year. I played over 250 shows and recorded my first solo album.
SC: Has the music industry changed over the years? And if so, how?
The music industry is constantly changing. Not always for the better cough disco cough. But, no, seriously, trends come and go. It’s all kinda cyclical in a way. I think, right now, thank God, people are more interested in good songwriting, and they want to hear the writer as the performer.
SC: What can you tell us a little about your record, Just Another 1-4-5.
It’s a live album containing 9 original songs written by yours truly. It’s fairly simple with minimal instrumentation. I really wanted the focus to be on the lyrical content. Regardless, the musicians did a wonderful job. Dan Emmett played fiddle, Josh Moss played bass, my dad Michael Crowder sang harmonies, and Jason Springs even made an appearance (on “Sweet Virginia”). The songs are honest, and I believe that comes through on the album. It’s been really great performing those songs over the past 6 months and seeing how the crowds react. It’s a bit overwhelming to see such strong emotional responses to something you created.
SC: How can people get a copy of Just Another 1-4-5?
It’s available on my website www.mattcrowdermusic.com as well as most streaming services. I also have physical copies with me at every show.
SC: Looking back on your career is there anything you like to change?
“No regrets” Haha! If I could change anything, I’d probably remove a lot of the doubt I allowed to get in the way of accomplishing certain goals. I got caught up in helping other people pursue their dreams and let my own sit on the back burner out of fear of failure. It can be hard navigating a career in which you’re constantly getting feedback on whether you’re good or not. It’s hard to say, really. Maybe, I needed to go through that in order to figure out who I am as an artist.
SC: What advice do you have aspiring musicians?
Go back to school and get a real job! That’s pretty good advice but, in all seriousness, if you want to pursue music, do it with passion. I think that’s true for just about any profession. If you don’t love it, what’s the point? If you’re not progressing, what’s the point? You have to eat, sleep, and breathe it. Study and absorb all that you can. Learn your craft.
SC: Where can people catch you playing?
I perform mostly in Virginia and North Carolina. In addition to performing solo and with my own band, I play with Jason Springs and The Megan Doss Band. Show dates are listed on my website www.mattcrowdermusic.com and for booking inquiries, contact Linda Zimmermann at firstname.lastname@example.org