Fun Fest Interviews: Jim Ward

Lucky for us, we were able to catch up with one of our favorites, Jim Ward, prior to his gig at Fun Fun Fun Fest this past weekend. Read on for a bit of info on Jim, as well as his future recordings with Sparta.

ATH: I’m sure you get tired of hearing this, but let’s get the ridiculousness out of the way….Fun Fun Fun Fest has a unique talent for getting great old bands to reunite, if only for a night.  Any possibility of ATDI ever making it to the stage again, or are you finally ready to shut that door permanently?

Jim: I think we are letting that sleeping dog lie.

ATH: Along close lines, your web site, Tembloroso, informs us that you’ll be in the studio this year working with Sparta again on a new LP.  Is that project under way already?  Care to update us on the progress?

Jim: We start next weekend, we are all super excited to get cracking.

ATH: How has everything gone since the release of your first solo-album? Press seems pretty good, but is there anything you think you’d go back and change?

Jim: I would probably have done a support tour instead of so much headlining stuff. I would have like to take a crack at bigger crowds.

ATH: I’m really interested in how you seem steeped in the history, or in at least creating/maintaining it in El Paso, with regards to music/culture.   You’ve been giving a great deal back, either in writing, or in opening venues.  How has the town impacted you both as a person, and as a musician?

Jim: The town is the cornerstone of my life. It is my birth place and inspiration and love of my life, I don’t know why that is but it is. As time goes on me and El Paso are becoming more and more entwined, and I like it.

ATH: How is Tricky Falls going out there?

Jim: We are getting the kinks worked out and have had some amazing moments already. It is a long term project so we will go in small steps – as long as we can keep it around for 10 years I will be happy.

ATH: You’ve been in some incredible bands over the years, yet lately you seem to have turned towards a more solitary focus, be it solo or with Sleepercar.  After all these years, do you feel more comfortable with a band behind you, or on stage all alone?

Jim: I always feel more comfortable with a band, especially if Tony Hajjar is there.

ATH: People seem to forget that ATDI ended after being together for almost seven years, if not longer before recording.  In all this time, what’s been the biggest change in the way you see music being released?  Do you think it makes it harder or easier to be a musician, and earn a living nowadays?

Jim: I think it is easier to get your music out and way harder to make a living. We all spend so much time on the road just breaking even?

ATH: What’s the best thing about coming to Austin for Fun Fun Fun Fest?  Seeing the bands? Playing? Old friends?  Or are you coming in and heading right back out?

Jim: Bands, friends, Austin, food, booze, good times, hangovers, I will be here all weekend.

ATH: Is there anything you still feel like you have to accomplish as a musician?  Or do you feel like you’ve accomplished all the goals you set out for yourself at the beginning?  What does the future hold for you, hopefully?

Jim: I won’t ever be satisfied. I want to keep working on being the best songwriter I can be, and hopefully being a good human being, that’s the goal.

Sounds like Jim’s got his priorities straight, giving back to his community, and aspiring to go down as one of the best musicians in Texas’ history.  We appreciate his time, and we hope you got to check out his set.  If not, look to the future, because Jim will surely be around for some time to come.

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