Travis Book is a Practical Romantic
After two decades in The Infamous Stringdusters, the Grammy-award winning neo bluegrass band, Travis Book releases his rock americana debut: Love and Other Strange Emotions. That’s not to say that Book, who thrives on collaboration, got here on his own. The Colorado musician (now residing in Western North Carolina), was raised by parents who went out their way to ensure that young Travis respected music and had access to instruments. His mother bought him his first bass guitar and his dad allowed him to buy Red Hot Chilli Peppers Blood Sugar Sex Magik (even though it had a parental advisory sticker on the cover). As Travis went off to college in Durango, CO, he found a supportive and vibrant Bluegrass scene where he encountered future members of Greensky Bluegrass (Anders Beck), Leftover Salmon (Andy Thorn) and The Jon Stickley Trio. Those musicians would form their first bluegrass band Broke Mountain Bluegrass Band, which has just reissued a remastered version of their album Cabin in the Hills.
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In our conversation, Travis talks about his brief time in Nashville, after he auditioned for The Stringdusters and got the gig as their upright bass player and vocalist. Spoiler alert: he felt VERY intimidated. We get into why he loves collaborations so much and has chosen to create his variety show turned podcast, The Travis Book Happy Hour, into an engine for unique performances with guests like Lindsay Lou, Jim Lauderdale, Sierra Hull and many more. The Happy Hour, which started in Spring 2020, was first set without an audience, which made Travis let go of his attachment to their reaction using wisdom borrowed from Eastern philosophy. He also explains how he is romantic, yet practical in everything he works to accomplish. Travis is a literal ray of positivity, so if you’re having a bad day, I promise that this conversation’s gonna lift you up in a seriously not-cornball way. TRAVIS!