justin trevino's emergence as one of the hottest country talents in texas seems almost preordained. born in brownsville and raised in the austin area, he teethed on some of country's greatest artists, thanks to his father, an avid country fan and record collector.
at seven years old, trevino got his first guitar and started taking lessons. "it didn't dawn on me at first that i wanted to be a singer," trevino recalls. "the guys were teaching me chords and the only way for me to put those chords to use was to sing a song. i started paying attention to guys like ray price and johnny bush, and when i got old enough to know the difference, i was going 'wow, these guys can really sing' that's the way i want to sing."
by the time trevino hit his early teens, his father started persuading local club owners to let his son get up and perform. justin landed his first professional gig at 13, and by his freshman year in high school, he had formed his own band, justin trevino & sunset country. the group played beer joints and honky tonks in and around the austin area, most notably scoring a monthly stand at the legendary henry's bar & grill in north austin, a seminal venue for the currently red-hot austin country scene where the likes of junior brown and don walser started building their local followings.
in 1990 justin routinely performed at harry weiss' red eye saloon in san antonio texas. it was there at the age of 16 he met and performed for the first time with his hero, johnny bush. the two struck up a life long friendship. trevino would later work for johnny bush as a bandalero from 1994-2003. he split his time during these years, also playing bass for don walser, cornell hurd and darrell mccall while maintaining his own band.
in 1997 justin began recording in his home studio in martindale texas. after having two albums under his belt he began recording other artists who were interested in making traditional country records. his long time friend tracy pitcox approached justin about engineering and producing albums for the newly formed record label "heart of texas records". through this association justin has had the opportunity to record such legendary artists as: leona williams, darrell mccall, mona mccall, curtis potter, johnny bush, floyd tillman, norma jean, big bill lister, ferlin husky, tony booth and frankie miller. aside from himself other new traditionalists that justin has recorded for heart of texas records include amber digby, georgette jones, kimberly murray, rance norton and ron williams.
justin has 11 of his own albums listed in chronological order as follows:
texas honky tonk – neon nightmare records
loud music and strong wine � neon nightmare records
traveling singing man � lonestar tmg label
the scene of the crying � lonestar tmg label
too many heartaches � heart of texas records
before you say amen � h.o.t. records
texas on a saturday night (a duet album with johnny bush) – h.o.t. records
take one as needed for pain � h.o.t. records
more loud music and strong wine (a re-release including 6 more songs) – h.o.t. records
keeping up appearances �(a duet album with amber digby) � h.o.t. records
two of the usual - h.o.t. records
in 2006 he was awarded the academy of western artists "pure country record producer". in 2007 he was given a "terry award" for record producer of the year. and in 2008 his version of chuck cusimano's song "when she does me right she does you wrong", was named "song of the year" by the academy of western artists
his music can be heard regularly on willie's roadhouse sirius channel 56/ xm channel 56. in january 2008, he was a guest on the "bill anderson visits with the legends" tribute to hank thompson and a featured artist on the 2008 dvd set of "country's family reunion". justin also enjoys hosting the ernest tubb midnight jamboree during his occasional trips to nashville. but most of the time you can find him in any number of texas dancehalls where hard core country music is loved and appreciated, either leading his own band, or playing bass, singing harmony and fronting the band for darrell mccall and the tennessee volunteers.
march of 2008 brought about a move to brady texas for justin and his wife sissy. there, justin and tracy pitcox have opened the new heart of texas recording studio, where he continues to record all the heart of texas artists as well as various independent artists.
justin’s new album, “two of the usual”, was just released this month. justin is very proud to have some of his close friends singing with him throughout the album. included are duets with tony booth and jan howard as well as vocal collaborations with: dawn sears, amber digby, darrell mccall and cody mccall.
justin plans to continue his efforts to help preserve traditional country music, both as an artist and record producer, as long as there’s an audience for it.