Eddie London Interview
Here's a guy who has really paid his dues in country music. Eddie London
has sung harmony and played bass for people like Kitty Wells and Red Sovine.
He's sung lead vocals on demos of songs that went on to become hits for George
Strait, Reba McEntire and The Oak Ridge Boys. He moved to Nashville in 1978,
hoping to catch a break. That break has arrived with Eddie London's debut album
on RCA/BMG Records, titled "Do It Right."
We might also add that Eddie used to live in Rome, New York.
Q. Eddie, since you lived so close to Syracuse at one
time, did you ever have the chance to visit here?
A. Sure did. I worked the Syracuse War Memorial one time when I was in
the sixth grade. My older brother Jerry, we used to sing and get booked on
local shows and kind of had a decent little record out that we came to Nashville
and did. We'd get put on some major shows, just from being local little stars,
cute kids, whatever. Faron Young agreed we could be on the show one night,
and we worked the Syracuse War Memorial. We did about two or three songs
with him, used his band. Since then, you know, I know Faron real well, and
we've talked about it a couple of times.
Q. What year would that have been?
A. I'm gonna call it "68. Between that and 70.
Q. How long did you live in Rome, N.Y.?
A. It was about three and a half years.
Q. Was there ever a time when you thought that a solo
career was just not going to happen for you, and that you might as well be
as happy as you can, being a sideman for somebody else?
A. You know, I've come too close to feeling that, and it's funny that you would
even know to ask that question. It's so funny to have that feeling of
what can I do today to progress? Who can I call? What contact can I make? It's
almost like the fear of drowning, to know that you want something so bad, and
know that you're ready, whether you are or not, tired of the road, as far as
pushing somebody else's band and ego along. You want your own thing so bad,
not to the point where you're cocky, but you just want it. It’s now or
never. They say that's the fire you need. The old eye of the tiger. I sold
my bass and amp and got off the road. That way, I couldn't take jobs. I just
stayed in touch with writers, singing demos and delivered yellow pages with
the Bronco I bought and drove a dump truck, bused tables. It's the strangest
thing busing tables, not that it's a bad thing, because it takes all kinds
in this world. But to have in your mind what you want to do, it'll kind of
bring you back down to earth.
Q. There must be a lot of people in Nashville trying to do what you've done.
A. Yeah. It's really nice to live here and see and meet people that have the
same feeling that I do. I'm the first person to help anybody that I feel
is deserving, and who's not out just for the dollar, and what kind of car
they can drive this time next year. It goes a little deeper than that. There's
a family here. It's kind of like being an in-law. It's hard to be accepted.
But once you are, and people see you, you've paid your dues, you've
been around, and you're serious — the competition is stiff, until
that happens to you. It's a different town for me, 'cause it turns around
so quick. But yes, chances are the people that pumped my gas today are a
singer or songwriter.
Q. Let's talk about the C.M.A. (Country Music Awards)
Show. How does winning an award there help your career?
A. Well, I believe there's two eyes to that, the eye of the public and the
eyes of your peers. Hopefully, in the eyes of your peers, they can say well,
I think he deserved it, and I'm glad he got it. Business wise it ups your paycheck
a lot. It's another feather in your hat, which I hope to have a lot of those.
I mean, I want them. In the eyes of the public, it's like, wow, my person won,
kind of like the Senator you vote for wins. It's just knowing that you helped.
Country music is a family thing.
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