In the Press
Arts Longmont Magazine
The Prairie Scholars Dig Deep, Plant Roots, and Grow Longmont’s Music Scene
“I was touring Colorado in 2007and pretty much living out of our car, staying with friends. That whole bit,” Andy Eppler of the Prairie Scholars explains. “I played a few gigs at some local venues and it felt starkly different from the bars I knew from where I grew up.” He leans in a little closer and smiles. “People actually clapped after songs. I mean, I thought someone just scored a touchdown on a TV behind me or something. But it was for me. It was an incredible and strange feeling. I knew this was where I wanted to be.”
The seed was planted and the move was on.
Thankfully, Eppler’s wife and collaborator, Jess agreed that Colorado made sense. “Andy came back from that tour and Colorado had just permeated him. It manifested itself in his art, his writing. Everything. He came back to Texas and made big colorful paintings of mountains I’d never seen. I was moved. “So,” she says, “I toured up with him a couple times, then we moved. And we love it here. It’s become home, and we hope it will be for a long, long time.”
Texas natives, the Epplers settled in Longmont in 2009. Jess speaks of the town glowingly, like it is that rare place that is on the cusp of great things, but still small enough for artists and performers of all kinds to live, work, and create affordably.
Jess cites key contributions, co-promotions and local sponsorships from a host of businesses and organizations in fostering that atmosphere. It almost reads like a “Who’s Who” of Longmont: Coffee and Connections, Miller Music, Larry’s Guitars, local restaurants (including Subworks, Mac’s Place, and Georgia Boys), the craft beer industry (including 300 Suns, Left Hand Brewing, Oskar Blues Tasty Weasel, and Vindication Brewing), and the Left Hand Artist Group and Arts Longmont.
“Longmont,” she says, “is fertile ground for the kinds of collaborative artistic projects we’re interested in growing and cultivating. I love the ‘how can we help?’ embrace of every person and business we’ve talked to. And the music community?
“It’s true,” Andy chimes in. “It’s a trust-based relationship. It’s a relationship between the musicians, the venues and the city itself. In order for there to be opportunities for musicians and businesses to work together, in order for Longmont to grow as a destination for music-creators and music-lovers, first our own community has to know what it has here. As artists in the community, that’s the message we’re trying to get across, the spirit of the place and this moment. This moment in time in Longmont is beautiful and that is what we want to highlight.”
The spirit of the place and the moment may be what best describes The Prairie Scholars’ artistic direction right now. Small wonder that their most recent album – an eclectic double disc whopper of 20 songs well worth checking out – is called The Good Old Days Now and is dedicated to the Longmont community.
“The outpouring of support from the people, from local businesses, and the artistic community just blows us away. The community is very receptive to the notion of local performers they know playing in our local venues,” Jess says. “Over time – and not a long time, either – businesses have seen the benefit of hosting Longmont songwriters. People have started going from venue to venue following the performers and bands they enjoy, and are excited to see new music in the venues that they frequent regularly. It brings in good business for the venues and gives the community something to be excited about.”
All I Want for My Birthday is a Songwriters’ Series
The best ideas sometimes start simply. A household need that can’t be met by something at the hardware store. A notion scribbled on a cocktail napkin. A recipe that, for lack of a better phrase, combines two great tastes that taste great together.
Or a gift that gives to the recipient, the giver, the whole family, and, over time, becomes a tradition.
“The Songwriters’ Series & Festival originated out of a surprise birthday party,” Jess says of the story behind this year’s inaugural program, and eagerly anticipated culmination event at 300 Suns Brewery in Longmont. “Last year, Andy talked about how much he loved that we are in such an excellent music community and how cool it would be to have a big family jam with a bunch of local musicians, just getting together at a brewery, playing music and going wherever the mood took us. Secretly, I talked to musician friends months in advance so we could surprise him. I even had a great friend that we call our ‘Sound Scholar’ agree to beat us there by a couple hours and set up the sound equipment and run the night. It was a great community effort to make the party happen and it was overwhelming to experience the love in that room.”
When Andy entered Vindication Brewing last July 11th, he was greeted by some of Boulder County’s finest home-grown and transplanted talent for a “family jam.” And just like the best parties anywhere, everyone left wanting just a little more.
Enter this year’s Songwriters’ Series & Festival.
The Songwriter Festival will take place at 300 Suns Brewery on Andy’s next birthday. It was conceived from that first birthday celebration and has been organized into a more structured and purposeful show. Instead of the rotation of a few dozen performers, open mic-style, Andy and Jess picked five Longmont singer/songwriters to showcase. “Music and community are two of the things we love most about living in Longmont,“ says Andy, “Rallying around these two things on my birthday is the best gift and celebration we could think to have.”
In building momentum to the big event on 7/11, the Epplers decided to create a series leading up to the festival so the community could really get to know each songwriter. At each event one of the five songwriters that will play at the festival is featured in a song-trade and Q&A style show hosted by Andy. The series takes place at 300 Suns Brewery (335 1st Avenue, Longmont) every 3rd Sunday of the month, February-June, 5pm-7pm.
“Each event in the series is a performance,” Jess says, “but these are shows with a story and a purpose. Our series, and events like them, showcase the great music we have within our own community. You don’t need to go to Denver or Boulder or stay up ‘til midnight to hear great music. The talent that is right in Longmont’s backyard is moving to Longmont’s front stage. Downtown is a destination for people who love great, live, local music, for people who live here and people who don’t. A great side-effect of the series and fest is that it helps promote our local musicians to the surrounding communities and within our city. The musicians will sell more CDs, find new listeners and venues to play and be able to stay here in Longmont as working artists. If you’re a songwriter, Longmont is really the place to be.”
The final event will be the not-to-be-missed roll-up show of all five songwriters from the series on July 11th (Andy’s birthday, no coincidence) from 2 pm to 7 pm at 300 Suns Brewery. Two Longmont-based food trucks, Bumbu Bali and Bodacious Eats will be setup at the brewery all day. The event is free to the public and sponsored by Coffee and Connections, Miller Music, 300 Suns and Arts Longmont.
Scholarly Wisdom, the Last Word:
“Craft as an ideal, as a goal, is becoming an important value here in this city,” Andy says of Longmont. “It is part of Longmont’s identity. Craft beer, made here. Genuine, original art, created right here. Locally harvested and marketed produce. Music written here and performed here by people you know in places owned by people you know. That’s really what it comes down to: we make it here, we love it here.”
Jessica Eppler has been prolific of late. Over the course of the last few years she’s churned out a multitude of releases as a solo artist, as half of the Longmont duo The Prairie Scholars and in one case, a split album that was half her and half the band.
But for her latest Eppler does away with everything except her piano. While her voice is front and center in almost everything else she does, Eppler decided to just play on this latest release of hers, and the result is an album perfect for a snowy morning cup of coffee. From the gorgeous opener “The Blossoms Reemerge” to the delicate “First Snow” to the more bouncing “Lazy Spring Swing” Eppler goes through a range of emotions and themes with her piano, telling stories, describing scenes and painting contrasts, and her voice is seldom missed.
Tinkle, tinkle, little star… how we wonder what you are. Prairie Scholars keyboard sprite, or songwriter in her own right?
We could go on, but you’re already thinking about looking up polar bears on Buzzfeed. So here’s the real news.
Jessica Eppler of The Prairie Scholar is releasing a new album of original instrumentals. The album, titled The Perennial Pattern, features seven never-before-released tracks composed by the Longmont songstress, and five other tracks that have only been available before on Eppler’s album Dust Storm Dance, released in 2014.
Jessica was kind enough to let us give The Perennial Pattern a listen before its release, and to stream an exclusive track from the work here on the Longmont Compass, ‘First Snow’.
Perennial Pattern carries the listener through a musical representation of a year, from the tumultuous first signs of winter through Spring and Summer’s reprieve to the energetic and introspective fall. The first part of the album culminates in the resolutive track The Seasons Won’t Change. It’s a song that feels as though it found its inspiration in the swells and sounds of those that came before it.
One of the challenges that solo pianists face in a commercial setting is that our exposure to their music is often in big box stores, during massages, or during reunion scenes at the end of Lifetime movies. Eppler’s music is far more compelling. Second track, First Snow, has unexpected warmth and involvement – it dances playfully like a snowflake, but it rises above the ephemeral with a melody that’s equally evocative of the joy of warmth. Perhaps family, perhaps a fireplace… she captures the end of something, the beginning of something new, and the track celebrates both.
The third track, The Blossoms Reemerge, is one we’ll find ourselves coming back to often. It paints a vivid picture of resiliency, pairing heavy and ominous chords with light and expansive melodies. As it cycles between these opposing states, you can’t help but feel the lightness coming out on top – the melodies are played more fervently, and their phrases start to outweigh the darkness’ in length. It’s a song that is precise and purposeful in its craft, and an engaging and genuinely enjoyable listen.
Eppler is an unusually talented songwriter. We sometimes feel that it would be exciting to hear her play on a concert piano with all the subtlety it could bring to her work rather than a studio instrument, and we hope she’ll let us know when and if that happens.
The album’s official release will be at SKEYE Brewing in Longmont. Expect both a performance from Eppler and a chance to listen to the album.
Check out this great article about The Good Old Days Now.
"The Good Old Days Now" makes me feel honored to be good friends with The Prairie Scholars! Jess and Andy have crafted a local masterpiece, that I believe will become a standard in local recording quality. They are the hardest working independent artists in the business, and it shows with this record. They have been a vital part of building a community, and their philosophy shines within the stories on this record. My favorite tunes are "She Can't Wait", and "Waiting For The Fever To Break". I have been hearing these songs live for a little over a year now, and it is exciting to hear them in my car. It's amazing that Jess and Andy literally do everything. From the writing of the songs, to making killer art work for the cover and liner notes. I can't urge my friends and fan base enough to buy this record!
"Their piano-driven honky-tonk blends with sing-songy Americana, and heart-felt singer/songwriter material that comes off like a softer, gentler Robert Earl Keen; music that fits as equally well alongside pints as it does wine glasses." ...
Read the full review here.
"The Prarie Scholars have dropped a project that will cement them among Colorado’s hardest working bands- a 20-song double album that jumps freely between soul, country, folk and ragtime, often within the same song. The songs are catchy and memorable- tunes that get stuck in your head with lyrics that you continue to process long after you turn off your player." ...
Read the full review here!
Longmont is a town with its eye on music. We have more than twenty venues in town that host live music, six independent music stores downtown, and this many live music events every month. It hasn’t always been like this. Andy Eppler of The Prairie Scholars recalls, “When we moved to town it was maybe Left Hand, Oskars, and The Eagle Grill. Those were the gigs for bands.” But Andy and Jessica, his wife and the other half of The Prairie Scholars, have been an integral part of the growing music community in Longmont.
The duo hails from Texas. “I was touring up here for several weeks in 2007, and I kinda fell in love with the area. I tricked Jess into coming up with me a couple more times,” recalls Andy. At the time, Jess was performing with another band, and Andy was a solo act. The two formed The Prairie Scholars in 2009 when they made the move to Longmont. “You gotta love the place you’re in. We chose here, so that’s where our energies are going,” explained Jessica. The musicians focused their energies on Longmont’s music.
Since 2009, that scene has boomed. According to Andy, “What’s changed is the mentality. Now the venues have seen that you can make money with music, and it’s sustainable.”
“There have always been songwriters, but now it seems that everyone is really proud to come out and show their work, ’cause a lot of times people want cover bands, they think that’s what the audience will want, but Longmont… it’s kinda taking on that culture of the local craft brews, now we’re starting to see that with the music,” explains Jessica. “It’s a craft community.” … ...
Read the full article here.
LONGMONT -- After the September flood, the local songwriter Andy Eppler was conflicted.
He wanted to write a song about the disaster, but -- to use the political phrase -- he was worried about the optics.
"At first I wanted to write a song and console the community in some way, but then I thought it might seem opportunistic," he said.
He aired his ambivalence on Facebook, and someone commented with a suggestion that he thought was a good one.
"Someone said you could donate the proceeds to the community, and that became the idea," he said.
Andy and his wife, Jessica, are known as The Prairie Scholars, a duo, and lately a full band, from Longmont that plays throughout the region. The couple, full-time musicians, didn't lose property in the flood, but they know musicians who did, and they lost gigs in the wake of the devastation.
Jessica was moved by the community cooperation she saw after the flood.
"It really was beautiful seeing so many volunteers," she said.
The song Andy and Jessica wrote is called "100 Year Flood," and it's available for download for $2.98 from their website, prairiescholars.com. All proceeds go to the Longmont Community Foundation for local flood relief, Jessica said.
The two wrote, recorded and released the song in only about three weeks. They feel thankful to be able to put their skills toward helping the community, Jessica said.
"People are being helped," she said.
The Prairie Scholars have been community boosters ever since they arrived from their native Texas several years ago. They put together a book with coupons good at their favorite local businesses, and they give the books away at gigs in other communities.
"The hope is that it will bring new business to some of the companies that we love," Andy said.
The couple also recently released a solo album by Jessica, called "Planted in the Wind," and a new Prairie Scholars album, called "Wasted Tracks." Those recordings also are available as downloads from the band's website.
Now there’s a smart use of a release. Jessica Eppler, who makes up half of the Longmont band The Prairie Scholars, had a half-dozen songs to release and instead of letting those six songs go out on their own, she and her husband Andy, the other half of The Prairie Scholars, used the extra space on the disc to release band tracks that had been shelved previously. It makes for a tidy two-in-one package. Both Epplers play on both ‘sides’ of the disc, but the first six tracks see Jessica taking on a sultry adult contemporary sound with poppy influences. Her voice shines particularly brightly on the piano ballad “Run Forever.” The five songs that close the release, however, are all Prairie Scholars, focusing more on their West Texas style, with both Epplers singing. Hearing those tracks begs the question why they weren’t released earlier, as it sounds like some of their best work yet. The group also released a new single recently that is available online, called “The 100 Year Flood.” All proceeds of sales of that single will be donated to the Longmont Community Foundation for flood relief.
Press Release from Velvet Syntax Publishing:
Songwriters Andy and Jessica Eppler perform their music as "The Prairie Scholars" in venues all across the front range of the Rocky Mountains. They have lived in Longmont since 2009 and have developed a strong relationship with the community there. They have recently been honored by their favorite local sandwich shop "Subworks" in the form of a glorious and delicious sandwich which will be officially named "The Prairie Scholars Chicken Caprese Sandwich".
"We spent long hours in the studio this last year when we released three different albums and we ordered a lot of delicious sandwiches for delivery. The owners, Tim and Sarah Test, are friends of ours and we are glad to support their most excellent shop. Jess and I are so honored by the gesture and the sandwich itself is very tasty." said Mr. Eppler.
The sandwich will be celebrated at the "home venue" of The Prairie Scholars, Left Hand Brewery on March 9th from 5-8pm in the Tasting Room.
At this event The Prairie Scholars will perform. Subworks will have staff on hand both to take orders to be delivered to the venue and to collect payment for those purchases. There will even be ballots available for voting on the final ingredient of the sandwich.
"We want our community to be part of this with us so we worked it out with Subworks to let the folks at this event have a little say about the final product. There will be forms to fill out with some choices for a final ingredient for the sandwich. I hope they pick bacon or something like that. We love this town and the folks we have met here. Left Hand Brewery has been a big supporter of ours over the years and it's the perfect place for this event."
For this one you will have to follow the link to the digital edition and flip over to page 19.
When Andy and Jessica are on stage they entertain their audiences with high energy, enthusiasm and original music. Since they began performing as “The Prairie Scholars” in 2010, they have quickly gained popularity.
Both a singer and guitarist, Andy Eppler, who is 26, likes to explore various musical genres and mediums. He plays guitar and harmonica in live performances, then adds drums, bass, organ, dobro and several other instruments, during studio recordings. In addition to being a musician, he is also a prolific songwriter, has published poetry and short stories, and has produced his own CDs.
Andy’s musical talents were already well known in his hometown of Lubbock, Texas, where he started recording music and performing. He has produced a number of Solo albums. He released “There is No Underground” in 2007, “Dark Places” in 2008, and “Disease in the Heartland” in 2009. He released another album, “Long and Lonesome Way” in 2011.
Andy’s wife and musical partner, Jessica, who is 25 years old, moved from Sweetwater, Texas to Levelland, Texas to enroll at South Plains College. Her captivating songwriting and classically inspired musicality quickly drew attention to her talent. Singing and playing keyboard, she performed in a band named, Clandestine Amigo, which played venues across the Texas south plains area. She met Andy, while at college.
Jessica has always been involved in music. She recalls, “As far back as I can remember I have memories of music. I grew up in a musical family – my mother was a piano teacher and I remember being impressed by meticulously memorized piano pieces at recitals we attended. I also remember the music at church and the emotions it stirred. ”She explained that, “Somehow, those two branches of music twisted together in me as I grew up.” She added, “An emotionally strong musical performance moves me like almost nothing else can. It’s not something you can touch physically, but you can still feel it deeply. It penetrates the skin and touches some invisible set of nerves in your chest, stomach and head. To me, the best kind of music is passionate and purposeful.” In 2009, Jessica released her first live recording titled, “Clandestine Amigo.”
Both Andy and Jessica earned their college degrees in commercial music, which was a music degree combined with business studies. Andy said along with learning about audio production in a recording studio, they were also taught how to read both music and contracts, while at South Plains College.
They were still living in Lubbock, Texas in 2007, when Andy toured Colorado for several weeks to promote a new album. He said, “I simply fell in love with the place and realized that, as recording artists, Jessica and I could live anywhere and still sell our music online.” So they decided to move to Colorado because, “it felt good and offered us the opportunity to learn more about bluegrass because of its popularity there."
Andy and Jessica teamed up to play music and were married in 2006. They moved to Colorado in 2009 and the Prairie Scholars was born. They formed their own recording company, Velvet Syntax Publishing, to produce their own label and CD’s. They built a recording studio in their house and have been producing records there since 2008. They have recorded and released ten collections since then.
The name Prairie Scholars originated as a result of their Texas high plains heritage. Andy described Texas as a, “huge, flat, hot place with a history of churning out great art.” He said, "Because we have studied the history of art and music in the Texas plains country and understand the way people there react to it, we have become students of the prairie and are therefore 'The Prairie Scholars.' "
Andy characterized the music he and Jessica play as “West Texas Soul Music.” He further described it as country music inspired by jazz fusion and blues that reflects the mood of the area and the attitudes of the people who live there.
Andy says he has drawn musical inspiration from various entertainers, including: Bob Dylan, The Band, David Axelrod, Roy Ayers, The Flaming Lips, Roger Alan Wade, Buddy Holly, Neil Young, and David Bazan.
Andy emphasized that, “Writing our own music is central to our work. It’s the part we have focused on most. It seems that well-written songs are rare today and no one is specializing in them. Well, we do.”
Andy described some of favorite work as: “Horse Thief” - a story about a young man who gets together with the wrong girl; “This is the End” - about mortality and the inescapable nature of death; “Kelly Boys” - about the responsibility of public service; “I Feel You” - one of our atheistic love songs about the meaning of love from a non-religious or superstitious perspective; and, “You and Me Now” - another song about discovering that there is no god and how wonderful it is to be alone in a relationship with someone you love.
Since they began recording together in 2010, Andy and Jessica have produced two musical collections, “Strangers in the Modern Era,” and “Live Wires.”
They plan to release three albums during 2012. Jessica’s solo project “Still No Empty Sky” came out on May 18th, "The Prairie Scholars in The Wasteland Ramble” is due out in August, and Andy’s solo project “Andy Eppler’s Traditional Christmas” is due out in October.
In addition to producing more albums, Andy is currently writing an art philosophy book, which he says, "will detail the functionality of creativity, dispel some of the superstition around the topic, and describe my own philosophy of why art is good for society." It is planned for publication in 2013.
One thing to know about Andy Eppler is that he looks at the world through different eyes than most of us. That unique view of the world and his sharp sense of humor show up clearly in this short interview. Enjoy!
Liedjes schrijven, liedjes zingen, gedichten schrijven, kortverhalen schrijven en producer spelen: Andy Eppler slaagt er in om als deze activiteiten te combineren en ze daarenboven ook nog succesvol uit te voeren.
Lubbock, Texas was de plaats waar hij het levenslicht zag. Het is een relatief klein stadje met zo’n 200.000 inwoners waar grote singer-songwriters zich thuis voelen en het was bovendien ook de geboorteplaats van o.a. Buddy Holly en de favoriete stek van Delbert McClinton, Joe Ely, Butch Hancock en Jimmie Dale Gilmore (aka ‘The Flatlanders’).
Er moet dus iets extra muzikaals in het leidingwater van Lubbock zitten want ook Andy Eppler heeft er al een drietal soloplaten opgenomen gedurende de voorbije 5 jaar: “There Is No Underground” (2007), het ‘spoken word’-album “Dark Places” (2008) en “Disease In The Heartland” (2009).
Samen met zijn vrouwtje Jessica - die een muzikaal verleden heeft bij de groep ‘Clandestine Amigo’ - vormt hij daarnaast ook nog het muzikale duo ‘The Prairie Scholars’ en heeft hij een eerste plaat onder die groepsnaam gelanceerd met “Strangers In The Modern Era’.
Op dit conceptalbum brengen ‘The Prairie Scholars’ tien door het echtpaar samen gecomponeerde folk- en folkrocksongs die hij en Jessica met de nodige passie en liefde samen inzingen. Het centrale thema van deze plaat is ontgoocheling en de moeilijke zoektocht naar een definitieve verblijfplaats voor hun rusteloze jonge zielen.
Dat ze niet de ambitie hebben om via deze plaat rijk te worden mag blijken uit het feit dat de geïnteresseerde muziekliefhebber de gehele plaat gratis kan downloaden op hun website en de bijhorende, niet altijd erg opbeurende songteksten kan u vinden op de website
Als we u tot slot nog enkele nummers extra mogen aanbevelen, dan raden we u aan om eens van naderbij te gaan luisteren naar “The Kelly Boys”, “You and Me Now”, “The Open Road (Ballad Of Ronnie And Darla)” en het slotnummer “If You Don’t Feel Like Lovin’”.
“Strangers In The Modern Era” is alweer een erg leuk klinkende cd van dit jonge echtpaar dat beschikt over bakken vol talent. Het zal dan waarschijnlijk ook niet erg lang meer duren vooraleer ze opnieuw met een vers muzikaal project op de proppen zullen komen. We zien het graag tegemoet.
Several years ago, Lubbock native & now-expatriate Andy Eppler was frustrated by the audience reaction to a one-man show (he did have Nic Shute accompany on trumpet) which Eppler had performed in Austin, and which I had co-produced. He asked me if I had any advice for him. I know nothing about the music business but, with that caveat, I offered my impression. “Maybe you should try to perform with a band.” Eppler is a serious songwriter who prides himself on his craft, and he demands an audience’s attention, so he does not like to share the stage, I imagine. However, I explained many great songwriters augment their performances with great bands: Dylan, Springsteen, Ely. He thanked me for the advice but I got the impression he dismissed it as the amateur advice it was, in fact.
Here’s the thing about Andy Eppler, Eppler is a one man band. Listen to his newest self-published CD “Long and Lonesome Way” (2011), which he describes as “fully actualized” re-workings of 12 of his favorite songs from his over 240 song catalog from the past ten years. When you hear this fantastic recording, the first thing you might think, “Damn, this man paid a lot of money for some top-notch session players. This band ROCKS.” Then read the liner-notes (yes, I still buy CDs because I like the liner notes), and you learn that Andy Eppler IS the band. With the exception of a few credits to guests Jessica Eppler (his wife & collaborator), Lubbock saxophonist Don Caldwell and singing legend Kenny Maines who contribute to Andy’s notorious classic song “(Why Don’t You Kiss Me) Lubbock, TX,” otherwise Andy Eppler plays EVERY instrument on this tight and thick, well-tuned collection of great indie-rock and folk-pop songs. Maines adds some hilarious new lyrics with his vocal backing to "Lubbock."
Eppler knows how to craft an excellent song in its entirety and record it with high quality. Eppler never ceases to amaze me with the apparent facility he has with a variety of instruments and with lyric and melody writing. Working alone is nothing new for Eppler. He always plays all the instruments on all his albums (excepting his “Prairie Scholars” side-projects with Jessica), and does his own background vocals. Every song on Eppler’s recent and diverse collection has groove, soul, style, wit, and bad-ass music. The harmonica, electric guitar, drums, organ, bass, they all are sublime and they are all tracks conceived, written, performed, laid down, and mixed by Andy Eppler. This amazes me. I want to compare him to Paul McCartney but that is more than what Andy’s ego needs, so don’t tell Eppler I said that.
Eppler is committed to making quality art, as he calls his work (it is art, in my opinion), that will stand up to critical acclaim and the test of time, and he is notoriously his own best promoter. So Eppler often asks me to write about him for virtualubbock. I am flattered he is a fan of the site. I did interview him a few years back when he was still living in Lubbock (he and Jessica now live in Colorado; listen to “Lubbock, TX” and hear the appropriateness). But I don’t always have the time or inclination to write about Eppler every time he thinks I should. I mean, I don’t get paid for this or anything. I have to really feel it before I can write a story. However, after Eppler sent me “Long and Lonesome Way” and I had the chance to give a listen to these re-worked songs, I felt compelled to give him a few words and some well-deserved credit. I heard a vast improvement to what I previously felt to be excellent Eppler songs in the first place. I like every song on this CD and I like them all better now. Sometimes I have felt Eppler’s songs were a little long but now after listening to these great “fully actualized” versions on the new CD and I don’t want any of these songs to end.
Extremely well-done young man, I say to Eppler. Well done. You are truly one of Lubbock’s musical treasures. Now quit bugging me for awhile. Love you, bro.
Prairie Scholars: Unpredictable, entertaining Jessica, Andy Eppler earn fans
South Plains College Newspaper
Andy Eppler's "Lubbock, Texas" is a killer song that gradually also becomes a sing-along, and most likely will become a requested favorite when played in Lubbock music venues by Eppler ... or eventually by artists who are going to feel a growing kinship with the Lubbock-born singer-songwriter.
The song already works, but adding Kenny Maines familiar voice on harmony and chorus is a blessed stroke of genius as it dilutes any perceived bitterness and puts the emphasis back on fun.
Sure, " Lubbock , Texas " is an original composition that will continue to reflect the frustrations of a young artist -- any young artist -- but it isn't ugly and the door is left open for Andy and Lubbock to one day kiss and make up.