My Hometown: with Christian Lopez
I grew up in a town called Martinsburg in the eastern Panhandle of West Virginia. My earliest memory was probably when my mom started me in piano lessons when I was 5. In a little private lesson at sweet older lady’s house. I just remember being nervous, restless, and stubborn. But I’m glad she made me stick to it.
Thanks Dad, Thanks AC/DC:
The first record that changed my life was Back In Black, and I thank my dad for that one. My air guitar skills from that record are what prompted my parents to make the decision to buy me an actual guitar. I still owe my live-stank face to Angus Young.
The Influence of West Virginia:
WV artists, Bill Withers, Charlie McCoy and Russ Hicks had a heavy impact on me. There’s so many amazing WV musicians that have left their mark. But the end of the day, I’d have to say my mom influenced my most. Not only is she a proud native of West Virginia, there’s no one who has loved me more, invested in my musical growth more, and who has believed in me more than her. I owe it all to her. Not only does it keep me rooted in folk and country, but the subject matter of my songs I find always to be based around how I was raised, my community, the people in it, and the sanctuary that my town is to me. On my new record, the stories and the experiences all stem from my home. And no matter where, I want people to relate. Because what my home state and town are to me, is what it may be to someone else somewhere.
The main thing I’d say WV influences for me is how important it is to come home. Musically, that reminds me to stay true to myself and not to try and be someone I’m not. The most important thing.
Seeing Live Music:
Every time I see a great show it haunts me and all I want to do is do what they did! From the first time I saw Van Halen with David in Philly, from the last time I saw Sturgill at The Ryman. It’s like studying for me.
West Virginia to Nashville:
Nashville is where you get things done. If you want it, you need to be there. I realized that at a young age and with the support of my parents, they helped me make that constant trek back and forth. I still do it today. WV will always be my home. But I do my best to make time to be there, to write, and of course to make music. The best musicians, writers, and producers I’ve ever met are in that town.
The Support of My Community:
I have an extremely supportive community. My state as a whole has always been there for me. Besides help from the local press and radio, there’s nothing like hearing that I can have an impact on youngins from Martinsburg and neighboring areas that they can do whatever they want. That’s all I want to do, to help people feel unstoppable. To inspire the way my favorite artists inspired me.
For more information including tour dates, visit: ChristianLopezMusic.com
Christian Lopez’s new record, Red Arrow will be released on September 22nd.
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In collaboration with/produced by Jeff Gorra