Texas Red Dirt country artist is a title Brody Caster has worked hard to earn. He chatted with Digital Journal’s Markos Papadatos about his latest endeavors.
The music is something he’s studied for years; first as a fan. And now, he’s traveled a lot of miles and continues to put in long rehearsal hours, so he can deliver quality songs and performances.
“I have tremendous respect for country music in general… and of course, I’m passionate about Red Dirt Country. For me, the sacrifice is worth it, because I really want to do justice to this particular genre.”
Caster grew up in South Eastern, Kansas, listening to Country legends like George Strait and Alan Jackson. It was when he discovered the music of Red Dirt Artists like Casey Donahew and Cody Johnson, that he became inspired to play music for a living… AND be a member of the Texas Red Dirt Country Club.
It all became crystal clear for Brody, when he sang on the Grand Ole Opry at 17 years old, with his National High School Honor Choir. He became determined to make it in the music business. And so after college, Caster decided to relocate to the Lone Star State.
Not long after his move, he was playing open mic nights and acoustic shows at any number of Texas venues. One evening after a performance in Decatur, a man named Monty Dawson, who happened to be Vice President of the Texas Country Music Association, walked up and introduced himself. The two had a great conversation, stayed in touch and Dawson would soon introduce Brody to TCMA President Linda Wilson, who also enjoyed his music.
In November of 2020, Caster hit his first Texas career milestone, when he won the new artist scholarship at the Texas Country Music Awards. AND his single “Started with a Song” won the local music showdown on Fort Worth’s 95.9 The Ranch, and charted on the TRRR.
The momentum in Brody’s career has only continued. Since last year, he’s been releasing one single each month, off his upcoming self-titled debut album “Brody Caster,”. It’s set for release on March 4th. He’s already got his tour schedule lined up through Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas.
We were able to get the ambitious new artist to push pause long enough on his busy schedule for this interview. He gave us some insight, as to what keeps his career moving in fast forward.
Brody, what are the biggest challenges you’re up against in this industry?
One of the biggest challenges I face as an independent artist is funding. A lot of people don’t realize just how expensive this industry can be. Major label artists have major label backing. For us, the recording studio, the van, all the merch inventory, the sound system, new equipment, advertising budget, PR, and so much more all come out of my pocket.
We are constantly needing to find ways to think outside the box, get creative, and get the most bang for our buck on certain things when money is tight. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve spent 60 plus hours a week at the day job, and then go put in another 60-70 on music.
Another challenge is gaining the knowledge and experience of how to navigate this industry. Let’s say, you get picked up by a talent development company., or an artist management company. You’ll be surrounded by folks with years of experience in this industry; and connections that can really help grow your career.
For us, we are learning the good ole fashioned way of trial by error. I’ve made so many mistakes and spent a lot of money learning how NOT to do things haha.
What’s the best career advice you’ve been given?
I think the best advice ever given to me was from Elvis Presley’s lead guitar player James Burton. I had the privilege of playing a couple shows with him in Louisiana a couple years back. He said to treat every performance like it was an audition for a record deal.
Every time you step on stage, no matter if it’s an acoustic set for 10 people, or a sold out full band show for 2000, you need to pretend there’s somebody in that crowd that can get you your big break. You NEVER know who’s watching.
What do you consider a great performance?
To me, a great performance is one that moves not only us up on stage, but the crowd as well. High-energy crowds are singing every word of your song back to you, screaming for an encore, then when the show is over… and you’re at the merch booth, everyone is telling you how much your songs meant to them or how it’s helping them through a certain time in their life… That’s a great performance.
How easy or challenging is it putting a band together, and keeping the band together?
It is very challenging. It’s extremely hard to find a group of talented and dedicated musicians that are into your style, and believe in you as an artist. It’s even harder to find a group that has strong chemistry and gets along well enough to tour together.
Do you have a favorite song to perform?
One of our favorite songs to play live is the new single “Vernon’s Roadhouse.” It’s such a high-energy, rocking, and raw tune. People really get into that song.
What does success mean to you in this business?
For me, success in this business would mean I’m 100 percent making a living with music. I could care less about selling a million records or touring arenas. You give me over 125 shows a year, and put 500-2000 people at each show, and every single one of them knows every word to my songs, that’s a success. I just want a piece of land where I can raise some cows and some kids, and I’d love for music to pay for it.
Tell us about the new album.
This is my Debut, self-titled record. It’s the culmination of the last few years of my life. It’s literally me in a group of songs. We tried our best to put out a record that not only tells you about who “Brody Caster” is, but has something on there for everyone’s musical palette.
There are upbeat and in-your-face honky-tonk tunes like “Cowboy Killer” and “Neon Neighbors.” Then you have the love song/big radio sounds of “Once I Meet Her” and “Go Down Swinging” that will just make you want to roll the windows down and drive.
Of course one of my favorites “Vernon’s Roadhouse” gives a little insight to the rough and rowdy road us musicians take while chasing this dream. We’ve got songs like “Wrong Town Wrong Time” that have a little rock vibe to them and really bring that Texas/Red Dirt sound to life.
And last but not least there’s “I Found a Box” which is a patriotic country ballad that tells a cool story about a Vietnam Vet. I want people to be able to listen to this record and just go” Woah, I don’t know who this Brody guy is, but that’s a refreshing sound. It’s good to hear country music again.”
To learn more about Brody Caster, visit his official website.