Growing up in the small town of Murphy, located in the Appalachian mountains of Western North Carolina, Andrew developed an interest in music at an early age. He got his first guitar at 9 years old and began to string together notes and chords as he watched his grandpa and great uncle (The Wilson Brothers) play gospel bluegrass songs regularly. His mother played the piano at their church and he began singing during service at an early age. He would later go on to sing on the local radio station, WKRK, during Sunday morning preaching. On weekends when he wasn’t playing sports he enjoyed hunting turkey and deer in the woods behind his house. “I was lucky to grow up with access to lots of woods, that’s where most of my childhood was spent building forts, chasing animals and riding bikes. I can’t help but to think that had something to do with developing the creative portion of my mind for song writing.” His father owned a local auto parts store and would often work long hours through the week. “He worked hard to provide for us, 6 kids is a lot of mouths to feed. We never wanted for much, that meant my dad put in a lot of hours at the store. He instilled the same work ethic in me at an early age, as his father did with him, I’m not afraid of hard work or getting my hands dirty, I have him to thank for that.”
In high school Andrew focused less on music and more on sports. As in many small towns football was king in Murphy, and what he didn’t have in size Andrew made up for with heart and grit. Varsity football would go on to produce success, awards, and heartbreaks for Andrew. As a starting running back he was recruited by different division 2 and 3 colleges in the south east. As fate would have it he would go on to fracture a vertebrae in his back his senior year, ending his plans and dreams of playing at the next level. “That was honestly a turning point for me, I didn’t know it yet but music would take the place of football later down the road. It’s funny how God can work sometimes, I had a lot of dark days dealing with what I thought was the end of my dreams and had no idea the passion and fire that would be igniting in me in a short time to come.”
Shortly after high school Andrew began playing more music and writing songs. “I wrote a few songs and my friends liked them, so I wrote some more, and discovered I really liked doing it. I eventually posted some videos online and was discovered by a few local venues, who asked me if I would come play for their patrons. That was how it started, playing for tips in a couple of little bars in my hometown and surrounding area.” Pretty soon word of mouth and social media helped spread the word and Andrew was booking gigs every weekend, while maintaining a full time job with his dad at the auto parts store. With local demand for available original content, Andrew recorded his first acoustic EP in 2014 featuring the local favorite “Carolina Hills.” The song was one of the first songs Andrew had written as an ode to his hometown. “At the time when I started writing that one I was going to school and working in Charlotte, it was the first time I’d lived away from my hometown. Being away from the things we’ve always had is a good opportunity to gain a new perspective, and maybe appreciate some things we’ve previously taken for granted.” Andrew stated in an interview with a local newspaper about the song. “I can’t tell you the amount of support I received from my hometown on that one, a couple of my friends (Tim Allen and Kagney Colbert) who happened to have experience in studio work, offered to help me record that first EP, I had no clue what I was doing haha. After we had the finished product our local country radio station played “Carolina Hills” in their regular song rotation, it felt awesome.” The EP release would go on to yield record breaking numbers for the local popular venue location in Murphy and was the jump start for Andrew’s official music career.
In late 2014 Andrew was introduced to current bassist Dave Poole and drummer Ben Kilmer, ironically enough, at a performance at a local bar in Murphy. The initial chemistry was undeniable and the jam sessions to follow would only reinforce that initial intuition. Ben’s brother Zach would join the in the following months filling the lead guitar spot with his own unique rhythmic indie country feel. For the next several months the guys worked on their sound and new original material and recorded their first band EP, “Things Change” at Dark Horse Institute in Franklin TN. While the band was still independent, the EP was all self funded, and therefore the result of many hours of playing, saving, and sweating. “Dark Horse was an awesome experience for us, we had the opportunity to work with Grammy award winning producer Steve Lamm who acted as our sound engineer on this album. Looking back I can definitely see some divine intervention at play in the whole process. There were so many opportunities where plans were hanging by a thread, but everything just kind of fell into place. Everything from the dates we could get booked with the studio, to everyone’s regular job schedule, to landing some superb studio musicians (Lauren Conklin, Tyler Hall, and Billy Justineau) with a very precise window of time. Not to mention we completed the entire EP in just 5 days time.” After the release in April of 2016 the band kept momentum going playing gigs the rest of the year in North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and tour in Florida. The band is currently working on new material and gearing up for new stages and new songs in 2017!!