"Being in a band is like being married to four or five very different people at once,” says singer/songwriter Amanda Waggener. “And, let’s face it, being married to just one person is tough enough. I’ve seen fights between band members, and I’ve experienced breakups of bands that felt just like a divorce.”
Growing up in Traverse City, Michigan, Waggener says music was always her passion. “When I first started to really sing, I was five years old and singing country music. I knew every Patsy Cline and Loretta Lynn song that there was. One day, my parents realized that I was born the same exact day as Patsy Cline, just 50 years later.”
Having racked up hundreds of hours onstage in nightclubs and bars before she was old enough to drink, she departed Michigan in hopes of finding a musical combo to play her brand of soulful blues-rock. “I regret not getting out of there sooner and moving to a bigger place with a better music scene.”
In San Diego, Waggener formed a writing and production partnership with Poway singer/guitarist John Naylor.
“Musically, John’s guitar and writing style gives us our edge, with a retro flavor and lots of hooks. Lyrically, I write about life experiences such as heartbreak, observations, and of course love. Our next CD will be the heaviest blues sound that I’ve had to date.”
Rounding out the group are Brad Smith (of the Tighten Ups) and Ed Adams (Redhanded). Amanda Waggener and her band perform at the Point Loma Sports Grill & Pub on Saturday, May 7.
WHAT’S IN YOUR MUSIC PLAYER?
- Susan Tedeschi, Just Won’t Burn. “It’s rocking, soulful blues. Her voice is out of this world, and you just can’t help but groove to that CD.”
- Paramore, Brand New Eyes. “Hayley [Williams] just rocks it, and her voice is so recognizable.”
- The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Are You Experienced. “Let’s face it, you can’t go wrong with Hendrix.”
- Maroon 5, Songs About Jane. “Creative lyrics, feel-good songs, and soulful grooves.”
MUSIC YOU’RE EMBARRASSED TO LOVE?
“I have some Justin Bieber on my iPod. He’s a talented kid, though!”
“I first sang in front of an audience at age six, at a muscular dystrophy benefit. My grandmother accompanied me on the piano. I sang my heart out to my favorite Patsy Cline songs.”
“I was smitten when I got to open for the always-incredible Jonny Lang. It was my most memorable show, and I got an autographed picture that you can still find today, proudly framed and displayed in my living room.”
OTHER BRUSH WITH FAME?
“My favorite singer is Susan Tedeschi, and at every concert that I’ve been to, she has signed a T-shirt for me. She’s the celebrity that makes me most starstruck...I guess because she’s had a huge influence on me and my music.”
EVER WIN ANYTHING?
“In my hometown, there was a contest on one of the local rock radio stations where a listener could call in to vote for their favorite local artist for the opportunity to open for David Lee Roth, and I won! The story was featured on the local news, and the show was great. My uncle, who idolizes Roth, joined my band lineup for that show. What a moment to remember.”
WHO SHOULD PLAY YOU IN A MOVIE?
“Kate Hudson is just so adorable, goofy, and quirky. She just has this light and energy about her, and she seems like a laid-back, down-to-earth, fun kind of person.”
BEST LOCAL SINGER?
“I caught a show last fall by Tori Roze & the Hot Mess, and I loved her stylish vocals, her image, and her creative songs.”
YOUR MOST AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL LYRIC?
“From the song ‘Diamonds and Gold’: Have you ever been in love like this? I’d die for ya, lie for ya, steal for your lips/ I’d take a bullet on a cold winter’s day, and when the sun comes up I’ll make you smile, brighter than its rays.” ■