Texans are sad to see him go, but West Virginians are happily rejoicing as country singer-songwriter Aaron Watson takes the Morgantown stage. The Texan who has been playing music for more than 15 years is coming to play on Wednesday night at Schmitts Saloon.
Still one of the hardest working musicians in the genre, Watson will perform around the United States until the end of the year, and a few weeks into 2016 will depart for a few touring performances in Europe.
Watson grew up in Amarillo, Texas, before going to Abilene Christian University where he learned to play guitar. This was the moment where a new door to opportunity presented itself to Watson, and he realized there was another path in life that he could take to find his fortune and happiness.
He started playing around the area, before releasing his first couple of albums to generally responsive regional audiences. By 2006, Watson had collaborated with the legend Willie Nelson and released his fifth album, "San Angelo", which received mainstream attention, peaking at No.60 on the Billboard country charts.
In the last 10 years, Watson has found national success as an independent artist. He has experiemented with gospel music, as well as released the kind of music he is proud of on a daily basis. His last five albums have progressively risen on the Billboard country charts until his 12th album, which was released in February 2015, "The Underdog" reached number 1.
There has been a lot of talk about this album, as Watson is personally very proud of this particular record. He wrote almost all of the songs himself, and he came up with the album’s concept and cover alone. Watson says "The Underdog" is more than just an album title, but rather a mission statement for people to put their faith in and follow.
"If your dreams aren’t handed to you on a silver platter, that’s okay," Watson said. "You go out there, and you chase them. You may have to work hard for them, but don’t let anyone discourage you."
Watson is adamant about writing and performing songs that have a subject he personally believes in, and mainly that stays in the realm of family, faith and love. Sometimes these songs come out very heavy—approaching things like searching for the little bit of light that you can give yourself over to, or about the death of a loved one.
But, a good country artist knows that sometimes you have to stray from the narrative songwriting style and play something light and fun. Watson is able to blend these styles and make some really fun intelligent country music for his fans, and he will happily keep doing that for a long time.
Doors for the Wednesday show open at 5 p.m. Aaron Watson takes the Schmitt’s Saloon stage at 10 p.m. for his set. General admission tickets are $12 and can be purchased online or at the door.