NAME: Stefanie Fix
1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … an album called “The Early Beatles.” It was compilation of early Beatles songs, though technically I didn’t buy it. I was five years old, and I begged and begged my parents to buy me a Beatles album for my birthday. That and a pony. I never got the pony, but I did get the album. To read more about this, you can go to my blog.
2. THE FIRST CONCERT THAT I EVER SAW WAS … Bob Dylan at Madison Square Garden. My friend’s brother chaperoned. I still have the t-shirt that I bought at that show. We had what is often referred to as “the nose-bleed seats.” All the way at the top. Looking down from those seats, he was the size of peanut. Nevertheless, I was in awe of the man and just thrilled to be there.
3. THE FIRST MUSICAL INSTRUMENT I EVER OWNED OR PLAYED WAS … a nylon-string guitar from Sears & Roebuck. I’m pretty sure it was originally bought for one of my older siblings and got handed down to me. My first “real” guitar (read: steel-string, like my folk heroes played) was a Lori guitar. My father took me to an electronics store in the mall to pick one out. I imagine my father thought an actual music store would over-charge him and guilt him into buying something he didn’t really feel like paying for. It was the kind of guitar that took work to get a tone that even remotely sounded musical when you played it. I didn’t care. I loved that guitar. I wrote my first songs on it.
4. THE FIRST SONG THAT I EVER PERFORMED IN PUBLIC WAS … There were two songs. My high school had a talent show. The auditorium was filled with everyone’s families (my parents included). I was really nervous. I have no idea why, but I brought a thermos of coffee with me that I was drinking before I went to perform. I guzzled it down while practicing my songs before going on stage. I began with “Little Wing” by Jimi Hendrix, terrifying but I seemed to get through it. Then I started in on “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” by The Band. For a 15 year old, that song has a lot of words… I started to forget them. I was hyped up from nerves and (about a gallon of) coffee and in a panic, I realized I wasn’t going to be able to get through the song. I was so freaked out that right into the microphone, (to an auditorium filled with suburban parents and children), I just said, “F**k It,” and walked off the stage. Needless to say, I learned a lot of things that night.
5. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … My very first band was in high school, but I can’t remember the name now. The second band I remember being in was in college. We were called the Cavity Creeps. Our drummer came up with the name. The band was this strange mix of punkers and Granola-crunch types. The drummer and bass player were the punk types, and the guitar and harmonica player were the Granola-crunch types. I don’t think I knew what I was yet (punk or granola), and in retrospect, I was probably a little bit of both. We would rehearse at the bass player’s house, and he had this awesome, diverse record collection. We’d pick through the record collection and choose songs to cover. I remember we did this punk version of “These Boots Were Made for Walking” from a Nancy Sinatra recording and a psychedelic all-out jam of “Wild Thing” by Jimi Hendrix and then back to punk with “Rock and Roll Nigger” by Patti Smith. I just remember how much fun it was playing in that band, and how empowering it felt to be the lead singer in a band like that.
Austin-based singer-songwriter-guitarist Stefanie Fix tours internationally, and her current road trip – in support of her album “Crooked Smile” – will bring her to Averill Park for a concert at the Sand Lake Center for the Arts at 8pm on Saturday (November 19). Tix are $16; children and students under 18 are $10.