Saving Abel are currently on a grueling tour schedule, which will bring them to Texas this week. Playing the Rail Club in Fort Worth (therailclub.com) on March 13, the boys will complete five dates in the Lone Star state. With a new singer (and drummer) and a new single, The horizon seems broader and brighter- and laced with genteel optimism.
Scotty Austin may be the new kid on the Saving Abel team (savingabel.com), but this front man speaks with a depth that demonstrates that he is not new to the rigors of the rock and roll show. Scotty answers the phone with perfected manners. His long Southern drawl is like molasses, thick and sweet. Almost immediately, Scotty announces that Eric Taylor (bass) is also joining the interview. Their voices are similar and it is often hard to decipher between them. They play off of each other with a seamless ease.
There appears to be a renewed sense of energy within the Saving Abel camp, as Scotty and Eric take the time to discuss the changes in line-up, the new vibe and their commitment to their Southern roots.
SM: The tour schedule is harrowing, there are a huge amount of dates; how is it going so far?
ET: I've been doing this for over ten years, it's my life, so it's normal for me.
SA: For me, it's like being in the circus!
SM: Your website states that you are going to release a new album soon, how is that even possible with your tour schedule?
ET: We will go into the studio at the end of April for a couple of weeks. In the mean time we will work on new ideas, start writing songs, start tracking ideas; it is just how we do things. We are eager to get in there, capture his (Scotty) voice.
SM: How has it all changed since you developed your own label; as opposed to being signed to a label.
ET: We are still Saving Abel. We are self contained and doing well at it. Our fans are really our label. They are what keeps all of this going. They keep it alive for us. There are a lot of people who help in this process. Just thankful to be able to continue to do this.
SM: What about you, Scotty? How is this process going for you?
SA: It is like a circus, in a good way. I'm not trying to be Jared Weeks (former front man), I have a huge amount of respect for him and would never try to be him. But I am from the same part of the world, and I sing with passion because I understand it. And I think that comes through. I sing about our life, our roots, what's not to be passionate about?
ET: It goes off like a cannon. It's good to have that energy again.
SM: Scotty, how has your life changed since coming on board with Saving Abel?
SA: Wow, that's a loaded question. I've worked my whole life at being a musician. my whole family is musical, gospel actually. I knew I wanted to do Southern Rock. I was in another band Trashing the Brand, and we had the same manager as Saving Abel so Jeff (Hanson) gave my demo to Saving Abel and I got the call. I have a son, so I have to do everything right for him. It's hard, being away from him, but knowing I do all of this for him. I'll do everything I can to give the best show possible and I am so grateful for this opportunity.
SM: With you being the new guy, have the guys been hazing you at all?
SA: (unabated background laughter) Yeah, I'll tell you what they did to me. At the first show with our new poster. I was thinking, 'Oh, wow, there it is- a poster, with MY face on it.' I was blown away, this was real. I walk up to see the poster to get a better look and the guys had drawn a dick on my face. Can you believe that?
SM: Oh, my. Any other antics on the road? What about Blacklite District, how is it being on the road with them?
ET: Oh, we love those guys. We've known them for over a year, of course, we haze them a little more, although there was the one time, we left the drummer (Steven Pulley) at a convenience store. He's kinda quiet. We didn't mean to, but he got off the bus and we didn't know. We made it a good way before we even noticed he was gone!
The discussion continues for what feels like moments, but is certainly much longer. It's what happens with good Southern people. The conversation flows and goes off on tangents. Notorious for story telling abilities, it's how southerners get to know one another and these guys are unabashed about sharing their stories and their time. They have honed their craft and are showing the industry that through the inevitable changes within a band, it can be done without discord and drama. Catch their show at one of the five dates in Texas. Witness the renewed vigor and verve with which this band invades the stage. Saving Abel is proof-positive that Southern Hospitality is alive and well.