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Music City Musings - Matt Hundley

by Rich and Laura Lynch

Matt Hundley is a promising musical presence in Music City. He played his first bar at the age of 12 and he quickly found his calling. He knew that making country music was what he was meant to do. Raised in a small logging town in the Pacific Northwest mountains, he grew up surrounded by the sounds of gospel, country, and bluegrass. The personable and gifted troubadour now resides in Midd-Tenn and he is ready to drop his much anticipated debut album. We caught up with the artist in advance of this momentous occasion.

Music City Musings - Matt Hundley

MCN: In a town teeming with talent what makes you stand out in Music City?

MH: I see many in Nashville actually making the mistake of trying NOT to stand out. Rather than tapping into the uniqueness of their voice and image, they simply try to mimic the look and sound that they see from the Top 40 country artists. I think that standing out from the crowd is your only hope in a city so full of talent, and the only way to do that is simply to be musically and lyrically true to what you want to say, and defining your image based on who you actually are. For example, very few of the songs on my upcoming album would ever be accepted on mainstream FM radio, and that's okay! I've got a song about a wild west prostitute in there, and another one that starts out with shooting a possum. I'd rather sing to a small crowd of folks as weird as me who truly like my music instead of pumping out more pablum about tight blue jeans and trucks (Not that those aren't both great things, haha!).

MCN: What is the most significant musical experience you have been a part of - or witnessed - in Nashville, Tennessee?

MH: I don't know that I could ever nail down one. Every day seems to have another magic musical moment. Just a couple of weekends ago I found myself playing with some legendary rockers and outlaw country players that I've looked up to my whole life. I was nice and tipsy with a rocking crowd. I just looked around and thought how lucky I am.

MCN: I recently heard Nashville described as a dreamer's town. Can you encapsulate the size and the scope of the dream you brought with you to Music City?

MH: The most important thing for a musician to remember when moving here is that dreams change, as they should as you mature and reevaluate. My original dream was to "Make it". To get the attention of a big label and become rich and famous, pretty typical. Now my dream, which is slowly coming true, is to play music that I love and believe in for a crowd of any size that it resonates with. As long as I can do that till I die, I'm good.

MCN: What are you currently promoting?

MH: I'm really excited about the album I'm nearly finished with, "Live From A Single Wide". It's my first full album, and reaches deep into the roots of country music and bluegrass with lots of upright bass, banjo, fiddle, dobro, etc. About half of the tracks are live, and half in the studio. I'll hopefully have it out by June!

MCN: Nashville is an amazing place. Many call the Tennessee capitol the "It" City while some say we're experiencing growing pains. Either way, it's a fun topic of conversation and the subject always elicits strong opinions. So we ask - what do you love and what do you loathe about the town known as Music City?

MH: There's so much to love. We all like to bash on the touristy stuff like Broadway, but where else in the world will you walk down a street and hear hundreds of musicians playing in a few-block radius like that? The musical infrastructure, networking opportunities, and music community is amazing here. That being said, the city really is getting too big for anyone who isn't a fan of urban sprawl and traffic, so I actually live about an hour outside of town in Hickman County. To give you an idea of how country it is, my mobile home is about a mile down the tracks from Grinder's Switch, just outside of Possum Holler, east of Bucksnort. It's hard to write real country from a condo.

MCN: When you find yourself in Nashville and the surrounding region and you are out looking for a bite to eat - what is your go to place to dine?

MH: I just discovered an amazing place near me called Pinewood Mercantile. It's an old general store (And the entire town of Pinewood, TN) run by Mee and Lee McCormick. She's a health and wellness author and TV chef, and he's a rancher and farmer. They grow most of the food for the restaurant, which is served on long communal tables with great live music. The drive out here is part of the fun too. You can take the Natchez Trace and other amazing back roads down from Nashville and make a day of it!

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