Bill Abernathy Interview Part 3
by Christian Lamitschka for Country Music News International Magazine & Radio Show
Lamitschka: If you had the chance to change something about the music industry, what would it be?
Abernathy: Clearly monetization of what we do is a challenge. Generating revenue in our environment is a challenge to say the least. There are folks working to balance the revenue between the artists, labels and streaming services which is a good thing. Hopefully this improves over time and gives the artists some better financial recognition for what they produce for their fans
Lamitschka: As an artist, you so many tasks such as recording, touring, interviews. What do you like best, what’s your favorite activity?
Abernathy: Another really tough question. I really enjoy interacting with my fans. It’s very special to see the response to something you create that others enjoy. I also love the recording process. It is so much fun to let all your ideas flow and see what happens. And of course, doing the interviews is always fun as you get to discuss the process with folks. I really love it all.
Lamitschka: Are you doing anything to take music beyond its current borders or are you happy where it is?
Abernathy: During quarantine we have developed a process to use music to help local businesses generate some revenue. It has been really a fun thing to do. We ask our fans for requests. They may request one of my songs, or songs from other artists they would like me to play. I then make a video of the song for them and post it on our social media sites. In return, I ask them to support a local business in some way. Order take out, buy a gift card or maybe something from their web sites. We have had a lot of fun with this, and our fans have supported their local businesses in return. And I have learned a bunch of songs that I would never have learned on my own. Win Win across the board.
Lamitschka: What was your big break that got you into the music business?
Abernathy: I think when my tune Willow Creek won some songwriting awards and got some press, so people knew about the song and about me a bit. I still remember the first time I heard it on the radio. It was a very special moment for me.
Lamitschka: Before you became a star, were your friends and family supportive or was it a struggle?
Abernathy: My friends and family have always supported my musical endeavors. I could not have gotten where I am without them. That said, they will be the first to remind me that I am not a star. Just a guy with a guitar playing some songs.
Lamitschka: What inspired you to become an artist?
Abernathy: I think when we all start playing music, we try our best to emulate artists that we like. I did that as well. At some point I took the other artists songs and made them fit my particular style. I think it’s really cool to play other folks’ songs, but I also think it’s important to know who you are as an artist and use that to make each some your own at some level.
Lamitschka: What inspired you to become a songwriter?
Abernathy: Stories. When I was very young, I became fascinated with songwriters who tell their stories through song. A great example is Jim Croce. What a great storyteller as well as musician. I knew early on I wanted to try and tell stories through song.
Lamitschka: What drives you?
Abernathy: I think life is full of inspiration. Sometimes I think we get so busy we don’t see it. Kind of like now seeing the forest for the trees. Seeing and writing about the fascinating world we live it, the people, their stories, how we interreact with each other is the greatest inspiration there is.
Lamitschka: What does it take to be a music icon?
Abernathy: I’ll let ya know if that ever happens… lol
Lamitschka: What’s unique about you that will differentiate you from other artists?
Abernathy: Actually, I think a couple things. First of all, the versatility we have in our music that crosses so many genre boundaries. That kind of sets us apart and certainly keeps things interesting for me. Secondly, I really write from actual experiences which I think is not as common as one would think