We had the good fortune of connecting with Huston Sonhouse and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Huston, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
My youth and most of my twenties was spent building and joining bands only to have them break up due to members disagreeing creatively and having changes of heart. It is easy to find passionate and inspired people in an artistic field like the music industry, but it can be difficult, in the early stages at least, to find people who take it seriously as a business. This has been my experience and is one of the main reasons I built my current project as a solo artist. I specifically wrote the music for my recent EP, Old Maverick Road, to work well with a full band or with just an acoustic guitar. While my purpose in writing music this way was clear – to allow for flexibility in the composition of the band in hopes of sustaining the life of the project – something unexpected developed during the writing process. I found myself going back to the fundamentals. When you are writing for a large multi-instrumental band, it can be easy to overcomplicate. If you’re not careful, the pieces in your “wall of sound” can overshadow and undermine each other. When you write a song acoustically, there is nowhere to hide. The basics of the song must hold their own in both their quality and ability to engage the listener. The Berklee guitar professor, Tomo Fujita, says “simple is good”. I think this is a lesson I’ve had to learn over and over again. When recording the songs for Old Maverick Road, I couldn’t help but include several additional instruments – I do want a band to be able to join in after all – but like with my new project and writing process, I did my best to keep it simple.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I feel like I have finally found my voice as a musician. It’s a great feeling. I spent years writing songs, playing guitar in bands, and singing in the background. Nothing ever quite seemed to click. It was only when I took a leap of faith to pursue a solo project that my true sound revealed itself. When live music and social gatherings were put on hold during the pandemic, I realized that if I was going to keep writing and playing music I was going to have to do it on my own. I sat down with the goal of writing simple, acoustically-driven music that sounded good with just me playing. In the writing process, I discovered my actual voice – the baritone vocals for which I’m most recognized – as well as my musical composition voice, which I think taps into an exciting, new sound. The singer-songwriter style is something like outlaw-americana, although I haven’t quite put my finger on the correct term. The songs off of my recent EP, Old Maverick Road, the result of my solo pursuit, have been described as haunting and poetic. I guess that’s a part of this new voice that I’ve found. It seems like everything in my life has been leading to this moment. Now that I’m here, I’m more in love with music than ever. I can’t stop writing. Even though I just put out Old Maverick Road this year, I’m already knee-deep in a new album, which I can’t wait to share with everyone. I think a lot of artists will tell you, the path to find your voice is long and arduous – a life-long journey maybe – and let’s just say, I’m really starting to enjoy the ride.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Well, I’m a big baseball fan, so I think seeing a Rockies game would have to be a must. I was also born and raised in the Denver area, so some of my favorite food is from classic spots like Crown Burger, The Bagel Deli at Hampden and Monaco, and Looking Good over on Sheridan. I also love playing golf, and there are a ton of great courses in the Denver area. I’d highly recommend it especially since your ball flies further here – feels great. It also goes without saying that you should head out to the mountains. They’re not just pretty to look at.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I don’t know where I would I be without my wife, Taylor. She pushes me to do my best, helps me craft my songs and lyrics, and keeps me organized. Where I create, she executes. I think we make a great team!