Video host/personality CMT
Previous Positions: Bartender, shoe salesman, struggling actor
Years in the biz: 10
Marital Status: Married, 3yrs
Kids: 2 dogs
I know you have an interesting schedule, but what compromises a typical day for you? It all depends on the day. My work load can be very sporadic. But typically when we shoot the Top 20 Countdown, I arrive around 8:30am, make-up at 9:00, rolling by 10:00. This all, of course, is dependent on my coffee intake that morning. Sometimes we don’t roll until 11:00. Then, if we have an artist on the show that day we shoot what we can around their interview. When the artist arrives we tape the interview and then wrap everything else up when they leave. On a shoot day I’m usually gone between 4:00 and 5:00
Have you appeared in any movies or television shows other than CMT? If so, which ones? I had small parts in Larry the Cable Guy: Health Inspector, as well as Delta Farce, also starring Larry the Cable Guy. I’m not stalking him. I’m just managed by Parallel Entertainment in LA. They handle the Blue Collar guys along with some other really great talent… and then there’s me.
What are the biggest changes you have seen happen in the music business? How about CMT?As for the music business, what hasn’t changed? Let’s face it, technology dictates our future, both in and out of the business. Adapt or move out of the way. Luckily Nashville (and the country music business) has always moved at its own pace but eventually change does come. As for CMT I would say the biggest change is the number of hats the network must wear. Are we a music channel? Sure. But with music and videos so readily available through a wide variety of formats CMT has to offer so much more to that same audience.
What was the most memorable experience you have had in your career? Touring. I’ve hit the road on a few major tours including the Dixie Chicks, Brad Paisley and Rascal Flatts. And with respect to those artists, it has nothing to do with them. You can watch all the YouTube videos you want and search MySpace for days but you don’t really connect with people until you get off the bus at some random Steak and Shake in Nebraska at midnight and talk with the night shift.
What other projects are you involved with besides those with CMT? There’s always an iron or two in the fire but I’m most excited about a children’s book I’m publishing and releasing early this fall. It’s titled The Old Man and The Cat and I can’t wait to get it out there. It’s a story poem in the form of a picture book. Buy it for a kid you know or the kid in you! (this plug brought to you without shame)
What is the most pressing problem the music business faces today? Finding its balance once again and getting ahead of the curve.
Who has had the most influence on you in your career thus far? Why? I wish I could answer that with a single name. But the truth is that I’m influenced by many people for many reasons. Anyone who’s shown real integrity and honesty.
What are your favorite televisions shows, web sites and/or blogs? Is there anything else on other than CMT? (wink)
As for websites, everyone should spend some time on www.ted.com. The greatest ideas and discussions are born there. And I’m a big Rives fan (he’s a spoken word poet) so check out www.shopliftwindchimes.com.
Favorite place to travel or vacation? The theater in my house.
What advice would you give someone wanting to get into the music business? Have passion for the art first and foremost regardless of where you want to be in the business. After that, just be nice to people because you’ll see everyone again when you’re either sharing a place at the top or on the way back down to the middle.
What is the most significant change you have seen in the music and/or video industry? It’s not really a change because it happens every decade but I love how everyone’s gone country. How many times does a pop/rock artist say “Well I’ve always wanted to make a country album.”? Wonderful. There’s room on the dance floor.
What are you looking forward to most? Once again for the retail price of $18.50 this fall you can take home what’s sure to be a children’s classic for years to come! Buy two copies of The Old Man and The Cat by Lance Smith, one for you and one for a friend.
What do you like to do when you “unplug”? Fish.
I’m ready for another round of “Rock Band”! What is the highest level or score you have ever posted? I’m not really a score hound but I know I hit 200,000+ consistently. But you’ll have to come over because I got a second guitar so I’m a full on nerd!
What is your favorite charities? ARC and Outlook Nashville