Jeff Mix is a Las Vegas based Americana Singer Songwriter. Heavily influenced by the 1970′s Texas singer songwriters like Jerry Jeff Walker, Guy Clark and Townes Van Zandt who were influenced by Dylan, who was influenced by Guthrie who in turn all influenced the next wave of artists like Steve Earle, Robert Earl Keen, Todd Snider, Lyle Lovett and so on.
People who aren’t familiar with these artists will typically gravitate to the common, “Hey you remind me Dylan sentiment”. ”That’s not a bad thing”, Mix says. “I try to write quality songs that are honest and close to true, but won’t let the truth ruin a good story.”
Mix grew up playing drums, just like his Dad. ” My Dad was a big influence on music for me. He gave my brother and I a stack of Beatles albums. We’d spend hours listening to those songs over and over. I went through the 80′s as a double bass heavy metal drummer and told my Dad Springsteen wasn’t cool because he smiles when he sings. My Dad replied, “He’s smiling all the way to the bank.”
Like most teenagers, Mix came back around and picked up the guitar in his 20′s. ” It took a long time to get the courage to play out, let alone sing in front of anyone. It has just been the last couple of years that I’ve even come to terms with my voice. That’s why when I get the usual,” you sound like Dylan , I’m wondering do you mean that in a good way?”
We Did Ask. . .
Song Title (on the compilation): Find My Way
Latest Release Name: Jeff Mix EP
Why did you agree to be part of the No Harm Done project?: I feel the best things get done when people use their gifts to the fullest. This isn’t work for us and we can do some real good for Las Vegas.
Tell us about the inspiration for your song: I have been writing tunes for an album that all take place in a motel. This song was one of the frequent visitors to the place. I had come across a series of mug shots from Oregon that showed the difference in people over time affected by Meth. One picture really hit me with the sadness in her eyes. I tried to tell a story of how she may have got there. Abuse in any form, without help and treatment, can put someone in a bad spot. That’s why this project is so important.
What do you have coming up for your near musical future (tour, special shows, new album?): Plan to record the newest songs about the Las Vegas Motel and shoot a series of videos to go along with everyone’s story at the motel.
What was the most important day of your life?: October 7th, 1995. I married my wife, which in turn brought all of the milestones of the next important things like 3 boys. Without her support I would likely never have taken any of my songs out in to the world with my own voice.
What do you hope listeners will think when they hear this compilation?: Wow there’s a lot of talent here in Las Vegas and we need to get out to support original music.
What’s the first song you ever remember hearing?: Credence Clearwater Revival ‘s song Suzie Q. I must have heard my Dad’s band play it as a 4 year old kid. They got me the 45 and I always thought it was my Dad playing on the record.
If you could speak to one victim of domestic violence, what would you say?: You’re not alone, there is help and there is something better for you.
How often do you practice?: Everyday. I went to a songwriting workshop this year in Nashville. I didn’t want to be the worst player, so I made it a point to practice every morning. It’s now become a habit. Now if the exercise habit sticks, I’ll be good.
What is the hardest part about songwriting?: The second verse. Normally the inspiration comes and the first half flows but you need a complete song. You have to stay in that magic place where songs come from. I want to write honest songs from the heart.
Any advice for aspiring musicians?: Practice but more so, own your voice. It is the one unique thing that no one else has. I have a quote from Tom Waites in my medicine cabinet that sums this up well. “You always work on your voice. Once you feel as though you have one, whatever you tackle will come under the spell of what you’re trying to do. You want to be able to make turns and fly upside down- but not by mistake. You don’t want somebody to say, “Well, he went for the bank there and lost control and he went right into the mountain and thirty seven people died. You want them to say,” Well he decided to take his hands off the controls and sacrifice the entire plane and it’s passengers. And I must say it was a spectacular flight. The explosion set off sparks that could be seen all the way to Oxnard. Remarkable.”
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