Steve Tenpenny Band

Steve Tenpenny Band
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At an early age, Steve realized that country music was a big part of him, whether he wanted it to be or not. “I can remember being six years old and driving five hours with my dad and my great uncle to the deer lease for the weekend. My uncle had one tape in his truck. Just one. He never ever changed it, not even to listen to the radio. That means for ten hours round trip, we listened to Earnest Tubb. Being six years old in 1987, by about hour one, I was about to go crazy. I wanted to hear Def Leopard or Run DMC or someone like that who I thought was cool. Then by about hour three, I caught myself singing along. I had to stop and tell myself that this music was for old people, not me. After the weekend was over and it was time to go home, I almost couldn’t wait get back into the truck for the five-hour trip home so that I could listen to that Earnest Tubb tape. Why try and fight it? I knew then that country music would always be cool to me, as long as it made as much sense as ET. A friend of mine named Phillip Rodriguez, who was a big musical influence on me, told me later in life that what made country music great were guys like Earnest Tubb. Simply put, “Anybody can sing along with ET”.” As Steve got older, he still had not completely found what influence music would have on him, or ultimately what influence he would have on music. Growing up playing sports, he learned one unavoidable thing. He would not be able to keep those hobbies forever. Seeing as how he’d always loved music, Steve decided to save a little money and buy his first guitar. His junior year of high school, he spent $100 dollars on what may have been the most important purchase he had ever made. “I always liked to have the best stuff, but my mom told me that there was probably a good chance I’d play it for a week and give it up. So I bought the cheapest thing I could find that came with a set of strings, a strap, and this corny instructional video that taught me absolutely nothing.” Steve learned very quickly that playing the guitar was something he would learn easier by just watching people and playing with musicians that were much better than him. “I never took lessons. I just watched. I was always just trying to learn chords to songs I wanted to sing. I thought the girls thought that was cool, so that’s what I did. What else do you think of when you’re seventeen?” Steve’s future brother in law started introducing him to a different sound for country music. These sounds would eventually help shape him into finding his own place in Texas country. “Jon put me on to a guy named Steve Earle. I heard a song one day called Copperhead Road, and I knew that this was what music was all about. Then one day he handed me two CDs. One was by a guy name Jack Ingram, and another was called Millican, by a band called Reckless Kelly. I was sold. This was the way God intended country music to sound. I’ll take Willie, Waylon, Merle, Jack, and RK any day.” After high school, Steve enrolled in school at the University of Texas at Austin. Since his football days didn’t quite pan out, Steve had to find a new way to spend his extra time. College for Steve had four main components: school, parties, beer, and guitars. The priorities did not always fall in that order. Here Steve began writing songs. “I think I just annoyed people more than anything. I bet everybody in my dorm hated me behind my back. Luckily my roommate played guitar as well, but he wasn’t much on country. So I probably annoyed him too.” Gradually though, Steve started thinking of seriously taking his friends’ advice to put a band together and try to play somewhere. “I finally figured that I might as well. That’s when I met Dustin Ballard and James Willis. Dustin was a young fiddle player and James tried real hard to play the bass. I can only say that because he’s still in the band and I like messing with him.” The band got their first gig on a Monday night at The Red Eyed Fly in Austin thanks to two of Steve’s friends, Graham Sones and Robert Henry. The show that really sold Steve on playing live however was 40 acres Music Fest on UT campus. “I think that was the one that did it for me. We were a brand new band and to hear hundreds of people going crazy for your music was all I needed to hear. I knew I was hooked.” After graduation, Steve had to finally sit down and decide whether or not music was his true love, but most importantly why. “Not too long ago, I gave an interview for the Houston Chronicle that I think summed the whole thing up for me. The reason why I love this music is that the guy up on stage is no different than your buddy next to you drinking a beer. You could switch those two guys and you would never even know the difference. The people in this business are not rock stars, they’re just people. That’s why so many people can relate to it. That’s why I love this Texas music.” At 22 years old Steve is trying to stay close to the path that has been laid for so many years before him. With every show and every song Steve works to find that one person who needs reminding, just like him, why country music so cool. “I’ve been lucky to get advice from many different people along the way. I think that Jack Ingram may have given me the most simple, but best advice, “Just keep on truckin’. Just be yourself and do what you do.” I don’t think it could be put any better than that, so with God’s will that’s what I plan to do…”
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Average Rating : 4.6              Total Reviews: 51

Steve Tenpenny Band  03/27/2007            
Saw him at Armadillo Palace, Houston last year. Great laid back sound. I definitely recommend seeing this guy live.
Steve Tenpenny Band  10/29/2006            
These guys are fantastic live..and great people. super show at Jacks in Ft Worth..they always make a fan feel welcome. i cant wait to hear "leap fo faith" again and for thier second studio record!! wow
Steve Tenpenny Band  09/19/2006            
The longhorns won the national championship in football. I honestly didnt know that. wondering now how i missed it. must have been listening to my tenpenny too loud to know what was going on. o well, better than the aggies i guess...
Steve Tenpenny Band  06/16/2006            
Scott Brown
I have both of the Steve Tenpenny Band CD's (West Bound Sun and the Live Cd). Both are great. If you havn't seen a show, the live Cd can give you an idea about how much energy Steve and the band put into there shows every night. I have been to a few shows and everyone has been outstanding! These guys realy know how to have a good time. "Good Beer and Good Buddy's" thats what it's all about!
Steve Tenpenny Band  06/13/2006            
Allison R.
WHERE THE HECK HAVE THESE GUYS BEEN?!!!! I live in McKinney, TX and have heard Steve's name around. After hearing on the Wolf that they would be at Love and War in Plano last Sat. night, I decided to go with a few friends. These guys were the best band I've seen in a long time, and I go watch every band in the Texas/Red Dirt genre I can. I bought a CD and have been listening to it since Saturday. Steve was kind enough to sign it, and treated me like we were old friends. I don't know if they ever read these reviews, but I just wanted to let them know they have a new fan in me. Rock on!!!
Steve Tenpenny Band  05/18/2006            
Linda Forston
Steve Tenpenny's fresh words and music make you feel like you're living every word he croons. His CD's are like books on tape, Texas style. Hey, why read when you can get a good read and music to boot? His songs and voice with his own country nuances, linger in my mind for hours after I've quit listening. It's like a musical that lasts end over end. Do yourself a favor and listen to Steve Tenpenny today. You won't be disappointed, but beware you will get hooked.
Steve Tenpenny Band  05/01/2006            
Jenn from Dallas
I just got my "Live From Texas" CD in the mail yesterday. I pride myself on knowing good music when I hear it. I loved the first record, but to hear a recorded live version of you guys is awesome. Ya'll have one of the tightest bands out there right now. The guitar parts were amazing. When can we expect a new studio album? Can't wait.
Steve Tenpenny Band  04/24/2006            
What a great CD from start to finish. The new version of Mrs. Robinson was my favorite in fact liked it better than the original version. I see this band going to the top of the charts and staying their!!
Steve Tenpenny Band  04/22/2006            
Steve puts on a great live show and this CD captures an excellent performance. "What am I to do" and "In Between" are great additions to the Tenpenny repertoire. Give this one a spin!
Steve Tenpenny Band  04/20/2006            
Every bit as good as the live show. Great version of Mrs. Robinson, never would have expected that song to come back as Texas Music, should be getting airplay. Can't ever get tired of Mexico either, what a easy listening CD, buy this one.
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