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INTERVIEW: TJ Leonard

How would you classify your music?

I would say it’s a mix between the genres that I have played through the years but mostly country, pop, blues and rock.

Who are some of your top 5 musical influences?

Toby Keith, Brad Paisley, Keith Urban, Stevie Wonder, Kenny Rogers, Travis Tritt, Randy Travis. I guess that’s more than five but there’s so many to chose from.

What do you want fans to take from your music?

I write about every day matters so I hope they recognize themselves in the stories.

How’s the music scene in your locale?

When it comes to country music there aren’t that many venues in Sweden I’m afraid. People in general like country but media in Sweden isn’t there yet.

What is the best concert you have been to? What do you like most about playing live?

A couple of years ago C2C was here in Stockholm with Jason Aldean, Brantley Gilbert and many others, that’s probably one of the best concerts I’ve been to.

About playing live: There’s nothing like it. The feeling right before you go on stage, the first chords, the end of the first song when you know that the band’s done their homework (hopefully) LOL, and then just interact with the people in front of you. I don’t play as much as I use to and I miss it but that’s the way it is right now. I hope Sweden will open up for country music cause it’s the best genre in the world (if you ask me).

Is there a song on your latest CD release here that stands out as your personal favorite, and why?

Paradise Road has been a favorite for many years and was first released with my band Chestnut. I wrote it about 15 years ago but it’s a song I always play at a gig.

How have you evolved as an artist over the last year?

It seems as the time goes I’m getting more laid back on stage, I can be myself, write songs with lyrics that reflects me and I’m more confidant when it comes to production and arranging the songs.

If you could meet, play a gig, co-write a song, have dinner, have a drink with any band or artist (dead or alive) who would it be?  

I’d like to have a beer and a banana/bacon sandwich with Elvis, have dinner with Dolly Parton and write a song with Toby Keith.

What’s next for you?  

I’m working on an EP that will include my latest single Road Trip and Takin’ you for granted that I released last spring. I will “recycle” one of the songs from the Chestnut EP, Flying over water, that I wrote for my son right after when he was born. One of the songs is about being out in the woods bow hunting, that I love to do, called Public Land. The rest of the songs are just ideas at the moment.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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