Producer Spotlight - Bill Green
©2012 By Bronson Herrmuth
Producer Bill Green works out of his BGM studios in San Antonio, Texas and he's had quite a career over the last 40 years. He's accumulated over 40,000 hours of studio time, over 3000 recording sessions, produced more than 200 albums and over 100 chart singles. Bill's also an engineer, publisher, songwriter, musician and performer. The following is taken from a July, 2012 phone interview. Meet Bill Green:
Bronson: Where are you originally from?
Bill Green: I'm originally from a little town in west Texas called Sonora. I grew up out there and my dad was a rancher and we moved into town. He became a wind mill man so I went to school in town and got off the ranch.
Bronson: So how old were you when you first started playing music?
Bill Green: I started playing guitar when I was about 6 years old and started playing piano when I was 7 and played until it wasn't cool to be a piano player, because I was taking classical music up until I was about in the 9th grade and studying theory and in a small town that wasn't cool, you had to play football. So I dropped out of music for about 6 or 7 years and played football and after I got out of college I went back to music again.
Bronson: What inspired you to start playing music in the first place?
Bill Green: I had a cousin that played guitar and was writing songs and he was about 5 years older then me so the bug bit me and he gave me a guitar when I was 6. I started banging around and he showed me a few chords and I started pickin' it up from there. I started listening to the Louisiana Hayride on Saturday nights and was listening to some great country Hillbilly artists and I just loved it. So most of those guys on the Hayride are probably the ones that inspired me to play more.
Bronson: You actually started producing in 1982?
Bill Green: Yes sir. 'Cause everybody else was producing me and I was just kind of learning from them because I was working there in Nashville at Music City Recorders, Hilltop and Bradley's Barn and places like that in the 70's up till the early 80's and then I started doing my own thing here in San Antonio. I was lucky enough to find an engineer here in town that kind of took me under his wing. He'd been doing it for quite a while too and he showed me more. By '84 I was doing everything myself. It's been a learning experience ever since then. It's something new every day, I'm always learning.
Bronson: Do you do your own engineering when you're producing?
Bill Green: Yes, we've had our own studio here in San Antonio now for about the last 20 years. It keeps me busy and I'm really blessed to do what I do and make a living at it and get my kids raised and gone and keep the roof over our head and eat and do what we do. I'm blessed to have that talent or fortune to be able to do this.
Bronson: When somebody refers to Red Dirt Music, what does that mean to you?
Bill Green: Well for the most part, raunchy country and I don't mean lyrically. It's a Texas Red Dirt sound with a little raunch to it I guess. Raunch is kind of a Rodeo term but I think in this case it could lend itself to music too. It's got kind of it's own unique style. The Red Dirt thing, it started back in the early 2000's I guess with Mike McClure, Pat Green, Cory Morrow, Kevin Fowler. All those guys they're kind of the core artists in this scene down here now and it's spread. In fact it's had some influence on the Nashville cuts, quite a few too. It's a breath of fresh air really for people. It still has enough country in it but it kinda crosses over to a little ragged rock. To me, I like all music as long as you can whistle a tune to it (laughing).
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