Big John Mills
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Big John Mills

San Marcos, Texas, United States | SELF

San Marcos, Texas, United States | SELF
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Translation of Article in French Newspaper Following the Country Rendezvous Festival, Craponne, France, 2010

Big John Mills is a very reputable guitarist and singer in the milieu. This master of country guitar has been playing since he was 4 years old. He became a professional musician at the age of 14. As guitarist, he has over 80 albums in his career, in his solo career, he is on his 3rd. He was awarded in 2006, 2008 and 2010 by the Texas Music Awards for “Musician of the Year”. And since 2004, his instrumental title Spicy Chicken (poulet épicé en français) was the official song of this prestigious ceremony.
Originally from the town San Marcus in Texas, it was the first time that he made the trip. “I really like the French public at this festival, they are very welcoming, and it was really a huge pleasure to play in front of them.” The artist played two times on stage this weekend, and each time was applauded for a long time by the audience.
Yesterday, Big John Mill did not perform. He made the most of going directly and meeting his audience. So he was in front of the stage for more than an hour, signed autographs and posed for pictures with his fans. His wife, Amy (our picture), helped him to take the pictures, she who never leaves him during a remote tour from their country.
This proximity with those who admire him and waited for years to be a delighted audience member: “He is very nice, he stays in the middle of the crowd to take his photo and talk with those that understand him. It’s an incredible artist, really impressive on the guitar.”
He makes up part of a group of 14 American artists who performed this weekend, exclusively European and French.
- Le Progres - French Newspaper


Here’s how you do it! When Big John Mills sat on my couch more than a year ago and played a few of these songs for me, I knew this would be a great album. I’m not disappointed. While Big John Mills can be heard on scores of albums all over Texas, it’s a real treat when he releases one of his own. This is Big John’s third album and it’s a treasure. There’s not a better Telecaster picker around and this time Big John has teamed up with some great writers to give us a true Texas masterpiece. Mills sings as effortlessly as he chicken-picks and has a soothing country voice. Co-writing with great talent like Kent Finlay and John Arthur Martinez, Mills delivers on each of the twelve cuts. Expertly performed and country to the core, this is Mills’ best work to date and will turn heads in a big way. Parrotheads will love “I’m Going Coastal” and aspiring guitarists will marvel at almost every lead break. Mills pays tribute to his father with one of Walter’s favorite songs on “Rainy Night In Georgia.” Arguably the best cut is “Chasing Rainbows” in which Mills captures the rover in all of us. “Here Come The Heartaches Again” is a traditional waltz tear-jerker that should soon burn up the airwaves. Country music fans will love this disc and guitar players will play “Chicken Swing” over and over again. The Texas Music Awards have used a Big John Mills tune as their theme song for the past six years and it looks as if not much will change. “Spicy Chicken” from Mills’ self-titled CD has been heard at the TMAs all these years. Could there be a new theme song? Stay tuned. Get your Big John CDs today!

Previous notes:

Did you get the license plate on that Telecaster? Big John Mills’ self-titled debut offering is an instrumental masterpiece showcasing his incomparable talent as a guitarist. I’ve known Big John for a while, and even though I consider us to be friends, I still get mad when I can’t play like he does. Six or seven players in the world can keep up with Big John. I put him up there with the best. Rodney Pyeatt, Mark Knopfler, Chet Atkins, and only a handful of others can, or could ever make a guitar succumb to their every whim like Big John. Encompassing a variety of styles, it’s not always about fast picking, but sometimes… it is. “Spicy Chicken” is my favorite cut. If I had never seen him do this live, I wouldn’t believe that one man could make all those notes in one sitting. Also get Big John’s “HONKY TONKS & NEON LIGHTS” and be amazed….be very amazed!
- My Texas Music


Local acts win big at Texas Music Awards

Local musician and the soon-to-become legendary Big John Mills won Musician of the Year for the third time. Mills won for his performance on Dewey Wayne’s “Here for the Music”. The guideline the judges use for the award states, “A driving factor for the nomination will be the ability to describe the performance as ‘memorable.’” Those who have seen Mills in concert know that his guitar work is mind-bendingly proficient.

“He has shed a favorable light on our fair city,” said Cheatham Street Warehouse’s Kent Finlay, speaking of Mills. “He will help to make San Marcos look good again in a few weeks when he and his band, the Texas Road Dawgs, appear at “Country Rendez-vous,” a huge Country Music festival in France.”

Before taking off for France, Mills will be at the Cheatham Street Warehouse, 119 Cheatham Street, Friday night. The gig will be a celebration of his award, as well as a great old throwdown for music.

- Le Blog du Festival Country Rendez-Vous


Discography

Big John Mills
Honky Tonks and Neon Lights
THAT: Tributes, Heartaches and Texas
Retro (post production)

Photos

Bio

Big John Mills, Texas legend and guitar virtuoso, started playing guitar at age 4. By age 14, Mills was earning a living as a highly
sought-after guitarist and session player. Born in Frankfurt, Germany, to a career military father, Mills moved to Texas when he was two, living in every part of the state and ultimately growing up in Deer Park. Mills studied music at East Texas State, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music Business.

The definitive Texas player, Mills played on over 80 records in 2005. His work on Jimmy Kaiser’s “I’m Gone” earned him a Texas
Music Award for Musician of the Year in 2006, and he won Musician Of the Year 2008 for his own CD, “THAT: Tributes, Heartaches and Texas.” In 2010, he won for his work on Dewey Wayne's "Here for the Music".

Mills has three CDs to date: “Big John Mills” (1998), “Honky Tonks and Neon Lights” (2003), which was the first self-released CD to hit the Americana Top 10, and “THAT: Tributes Heartaches and Texas" (2007). His fourth CD, "Honkytonkology 101", is in post-production. Of his debut CD, MyTexasmusic wrote, “Big John Mills’ self-titled debut offering is an instrumental masterpiece showcasing his incomparable talent as a guitarist.” Miss Lana wrote, “each line is a gem and your foot is tapping of its own volition.”

An engaging and electrifying performer and showman, Mills calls his expertly played music “Texacountryswingbluesicana” and those who have heard him at venues throughout Texas cannot argue that his natural-born expertise in each area makes his compositions – different at any given show, depending on mood and karma – riveting and utterly amazing. Guitar-playing skill like Big John’s does not often accompany such deft and wise songwriting and phrasing, but Big John is the whole package. His original rocking and rollicking song, “Spicy Chicken,” is the theme song for the Texas Music Awards. His original songwriting and great writing has earned him the respect of his peers and the devotion of legions of fans around Texas and the country.

His songwriting influences range from Merle Haggard to Floyd Tillman, Johnny Bush and Hank Williams. Vocally, John is influenced by Ray Price and Jerry Jeff Walker, and his pickin’ cites Chet Atkins, Steve Ray Vaughn, Wes Montgomery and Jerry Reed.