For more than 40 years, El Pasoan John “J.T.” Anderson has been performing in front of local and national audiences with his crowd-pleasing acoustic and electric versions of classic party rock, country, R&B, original music – and everything in between.
Before the coronavirus pandemic hit the borderland, you could catch Anderson performing at local restaurants and watering holes. He’s also toured the U.S and Canada, and opened for the likes of The Shirelles, The Turtles, Chubby Checker and Bo Diddley.
But, as with all live performances, Anderson has had to cancel gigs until government restrictions on gatherings and capacity at live events are lifted.
El Paso Inc. continues its conversations with local musicians about how they are surviving and creating during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Q: How has the pandemic changed your plans for releasing music and performing in 2020?
As per all performing musicians, I’ve lost multiple bookings, not only in El Paso, but in Southern New Mexico as well.
Q: What have you been doing to stay active while venues are closed?
The best I can do now is keep up with my own personal rehearsals, though it is never the same as playing live.
I have started writing again, which I haven’t done in a while. I haven’t recorded in a very long time and would love to get back in the studio.
Q: What are your plans for the rest of the year?
Keep honing my craft and be hopeful performing venues begin to emerge through all that has happened.
Q: How has the pandemic impacted you as an artist?
It is definitely disheartening to say the least. Taking away a part of your life will never be easy on the heart and soul.
Q: What new ideas have sprung from the downtime in performances?
Honestly, music is not my only gig, so economically I am one of the fortunate souls.
Downtime has opened up my creative side to writing again. I am glad for that.
Q: How can fans support you and other local artists they love right now?
As far as myself, all I can hope is for those that know me to keep me in their thoughts and watch for venues to re-open.
For my fellow musicians that are on any kind of social media streaming, please support those efforts in any way you can, whether by sharing your experience with others or in some shape or form, possibly monetarily.