American Aquarium made their very well-deserved Grand Ole Opry debut back in July, and today, they’re taking us behind the scenes of that very special night.
Frontman BJ Barham talked about what a huge milestone it was for his band, and also his family, who helped cultivate his love of music from a young age:
“From the moment I knew what country music was, I knew what the Grand Ole Opry was.
My grandmother talked about listening to the Grand Ole Opry. My dad has memories of listening to the radio and listening to the Grand Ole Opry. It’s huge.”
And it was even more meaningful because, after years of offering his dad fancy vacations and once in a lifetime trips to sporting events, it was the first BJ’s father agreed to get on an airplane:
“I think anybody that picks up an acoustic guitar and focuses on American roots music, this is a bucket list. This is a feather in your cap beyond feather in your cap.
My dad is 66 years old and has never been on an airplane until this morning. I’ve tried to get him to go to sporting events that he loves, I’ve tried to get him to go on vacations that he would absolutely love, but the minute he found out I was playing the Opry, he said that he would get on an airplane to come see that.
The opry is just a massive step for us, and we’re just happy to be here.”
It’s hard to think of anyone else in the genre, and an independent act nonetheless, who puts out so much solid music within a year span.
BJ says they do it all for the love of music and human connection that you can only truly feel at a live show:
“When you see people on stage, under the lights, doing what they love, having fun doing what they love, it’s really hard for that transferred energy to not take you over. That’s why we go to shows. That’s why we pay the $25, $30, $50 fee at the door.
To hope for 45 seconds that energy, that expressing myself to the point where it makes someone express themselves back to me and there’s that constant push and pull every night. It’s why we do what we do. It’s the magic.”
Check out the whole video here… there ‘s a limited number of acts who have truly gone out on the road, touring like crazy for years, and earned this massive accomplishment by rolling up their sleeves and doing it the right way: