Jackie Venson on calling Austin home
Jackie Venson is a blues artist born and raised right here in Austin, Texas. Her unmatched guitar skills and soulful voice take the forefront of her music, making her a prime example of the art that can be found right here at home. Known for her electric live performances, Jackie found a whole new set of fans when the pandemic forced her to bring that energy online for regular live streaming performances from her home studio. She released her last album, Ghost in the Machine, in 2023 and plans on releasing an album of all new music later this year. You can catch a pre-taping of the upcoming album, The Love Anthology, at the Paramount Theatre on January 27th. This special night will be even better when Jackie’s father, Austin music veteran Andrew Venson, opens the show. Grab your tix HERE!
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Scroll down to read our Q&A with Jackie Venson
Q: Where are you from?
A: I was born and raised right here. Went to Westwood High and even rode The Dillo downtown a few times when I was a kid!
Q: Why did you decide to call Austin home?
A: It was always a goal of mine to be a full-time musician that calls Austin home. My dream was to create music here with Austin musicians that reaches the world. I believe Austin is home to some of the best players from across the musical spectrum and all folks have to do give us a listen.
Q: Who or what got you into music?
A: Andrew Venson has been a gigging musician here since the early 80’s, but my Mom is the one who originally got me into piano. I got my first paying gig when I was 17 at the Airport thanks to the amazing Nancy Coplin, who still books the Armadillo Christmas Bazaar.
Q: January is Love Austin Music Month. Tell us about an Austin artist you’re loving. Why?
A: One of the bands I’ve been loving recently is The Foxtones. They opened for me at Antone’s earlier this month, and they just released a new record that’s been getting a lot of play in my house/car. Allegra, their lead singer, has such a powerful voice, and the band as a whole brings so much energy that you can’t help but dance!
Q: Do you have a favorite Austin music experience?
A: The first time I played Unplugged at The Grove at the old Shady Grove. It was hot, but the good kind of heat, and folks were dancing and singing the whole set. Afterward, we all partied and hung out well into the night!
Q: What is the best thing about making music in Austin?
A: The almost unbelievable amount of talented and caring people, both fans and music industry that call Austin home. We have a community that rallies and fights for the music scene. Whether it’s musicians, venues, nonprofits or radio, we come together to build each other up or lend a hand when needed.
Q: Anything exciting coming up that we need to know about?
A: Later this year I’m releasing an album with completely brand new music, the first time I’ve been able to do that since the pandemic.
Musicians: Jackie Venson – vocals, guitar; Rodney Hyder – drums
Producer: Deidre Gott; Production Assistant: Confucius Jones; Audio Engineer: Jake Perlman, Rene Chavez; Audio Mix: Rene Chavez; Cameras: Renee Dominguez, Patricia Lim, Michael Minasi; Edit: Patricia Lim; Host: Jody Denberg