Interview with J. K. Coltrain

J.K Coltrain was born in
Columbus Ohio; he has lived exactly in two states, because his
parents had a few different shops in West Virginia, so they went up
and down the country. He grew up between music and musicians and
that’s no wonder he fall into country music.


His first appearance in
a professional way was with 14 years with The Pleasant Hill Quartet,
a Gospel group. By the age of 20 years he went back to his first love
the country music, he played at that time in a band called The
Southern Express. They got a lot of regional success and opened for a
lot off popular groups as Pure Prairie League, The Nitty Gritty Dirt
Band and Poco & the Marshall Tucker Band. In 1983 he left The
Southern Express, because he wanted to start a solo career in
traditional country. In 1097 he was in the charts with his own song
called “West Virginia you’re still my home”. He was in the top
40 in Europe for 41 weeks and was in a lot of radio and TV shows. J.K
toured worldwide and worked with a few of the greatest stars in
country music, like for example Loretta Lynn, Jerry Reed, The Bellamy
Brothers, Conway Twitty, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Jerry Lee
Lewis, Buck Owens and many more. He is still recording and
performing, but he helps now young artists, as president of Colt
Records Nashville, Chairman of the Traditional Country Opry and he is
hosting, The Country Star Showcases.
Interview with J.
K. Coltrain
Music has many new fans
throughout Europe, they may hear about you for the first time. How
would you describe yourself and the music you make, to someone who
has never seen, or heard about you?
J. K.:
Well I am known as a
traditional country music singer & songwriter. I still like songs
that tell a story and have real meaning.
How has been the last
year for you? What are the highlights?
J. K.:
Well a very good year
from me as well as many of the other Colt Records artists. I have had
a Number 1 on The European Chart with my duet partner Nikki Nelson
with ‘You Never Know’ and my song “Two Cigarettes Out of Memphis”
remained on a number of charts for over 28 weeks.
What is the name of your
latest CD and how does it sell?
J. K.:
The latest one is called
Outlaws, “Heroes & Friends” and it is available on my website
at; as well as the labels site at; and all of the online stores such as iTunes,
Amazon, Google, Pandora & etc.
What made you choose
that title for the CD? Is there a story behind it?
J. K.:
Yes the reason for the
title is, it is dedicated to my friends, who are gone now that
influenced and helped me throughout my career, like Conway Twitty,
Waylon Jennings, Ernest Tubb & George Jones.
Do you write the songs
by yourself? If not, how do you manage to find the perfect songs for
your CD?
J. K.:
Both actually, I write a
large part of my songs, but every once in a while I will get a great
song from another writer that I just have to record.
How much creative
control do you have about your music?
J. K.:
The nice part about
owning a record label and also being a producer is that I have
complete control over everything 🙂
Who inspires you in
music and how deep are your musical roots?
J. K.:
Real deep I grew up in a
very musical family. My folks sang gospel and had me singing by the
time I was about 10 or 11 and I was on the road with a gospel quartet
by the time I was 14.
As an artist, you so
many tasks such as recording, touring, interviews. What do you like
most, what is your favorite activity?
J. K.:
That’s a tough question
because I love the recording process and being in the studio.
However, nothing beats performing to a crowd.
What was your big break
that brought you into music business?
J. K.:
My big break was when I
went on “The Midnite Jamboree” and Ernest Tubb took a liking to
me and my music. He allowed me to perform on the show on a regular
basis and also made some phone calls to help me get my first record
Before you became a
star, did your friends and family support you or was it a never
ending struggle?
J. K.:
The answer is yes and no
lol. My family loved for me to sing but they always wanted me to have
a regular job and sing as a hobby. Of course when I did have some
success they were happy for me.
What moments in your
career, stay in your memory as highlights and achievements which you
are proud of?
J. K.:
There have been quite a
few but I have been around since a teenager. I won The “Star of
Tomorrow Award” in 1991 and that was very nice and then I was
inducted into “The Country Legends Association” by none other
than Willie Nelson in 2004 and “The Traditional Country Hall of
Fame” in 2007. I am also proud of receiving “The Texas CMA
Entertainer” as well as “Album of the Year” back in 2009.
Any thought of
retirement ahead?
J. K.:
Not really, I might
someday no longer be able to perform but if I am still kicking I will
still be writing songs & producing.
Many European fans
travel to the United States to attend several music festivals for the
opportunity, to see as many of their favorite artists, bands and
celebrities as they can. If you would be one of these favorite
artists, where in the United States could the fans find you?
J. K.:
I don’t usually stray
too far from Nashville and when I do it’s usually out and back the
next day.
Many music fans today
get their information about artists online. Do you have your own
website and what would your fans see there?
J. K.:
Yes as mentioned my
personal site is at; and for non-English
speaking fans go to: and you will find out
all about me as well as lots of pictures, music & videos.
Most careers don’t last
as long as yours. What gives you the power of endurance?
J. K.:
My answer quite simply
is my love of music. It has never been about the fame or money as
fame is fleeting and I could have found better ways to make money 🙂
So it is my love of music that has kept me going.
I thank you very much
for the time you spend to answer this question. Good Luck for the
You can find some of his
music under you tube
And also his friends
And the official web
Gaby Agrikola for
Country Music News International

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