What Defines a Man?
by A. K. Durden
When Joey Huffman sits across the table from you, you may be inclined to shiver in your boots and blink fast and get tongue-tied while thinking, "Hey, here's a sure enough, bona fide rock star." You wouldn't be far from wrong if your definition of a rock star is accomplishments and accolades. Accomplishments such as long, worldwide touring gigs as a trusted sideman with some of the biggest musical acts known to mankind, shaking hands with presidents, and command performances at the White House. Or accolades such as playing on gold and platinim albums selling millions of copies, being nominated for a Grammy, being a voting member of The Recording Academy and an inductee into The Georgia Music Hall Of Fame in 2015. All of which you can find listed on his Website, Linkedin profile, Facebook page, or any other number of sources one can google.
But if you think Huffman believes it is the recitation of accomplishments and accolades that defines him as a man, then you would be wrong. The albums and the artists and the songs and the travel are mere punctuations in the life of a complicated man who is an insightful poet at heart and fueled by the mind of a brilliant raconteur.
Joey Huffman, not far out of the fifth decade of his life, is only getting started, boys and girls. Don't let the rough pretty boy, rock star, brain-tumor-beating façade fool you. Everything he's done, everywhere he's been, everyone he's learned from, all of it has simply fused together into a powerhouse tempo of talent he uses as a focused laser drilling through the noise of the industry to steer both established and new artists and bands to their best offerings for their fans. What? You didn't know Joey is a behind-the-scenes producer and engineer? You didn't know he has a recording studio? Where have you been?
Running away from a rural Kentucky home at sixteen in order to play in bands, Joey was dragged home by a father who forbid him to do that ever again. Drawing the line in the sand, he said, "Dad, you might be bringing me home now, but I'm leaving again."
Playing music was not a hobby for Joey. It certainly wasn't a passing fancy. It was the fire that drove the very core of his being and it could not be denied. He surrendered the comforts of assured expectation a routine life could provide, for the early on-the-road days when three-hots-and-a-cot was considered luxurious living. Look, he's been there, done that, paid his dues, and yes, boys and girls, he's lived to tell. He is still on the road during parts of the year – after all, Hank Jr. and others still depend on him. But while at home, he uses that knowledge and insight to save time, aggravation, and money for artists and bands by helping them smartly plan their next project.
His life as a sideman, playing a wide assortment of instruments from keys to bass to guitars, has not lasted this long because he plays at being a star. No, no, no. He's lasted this long and been so successful because he knows the value of a team and the importance of using the strengths of each member of that team to bring the best performance to a live or recorded work in order to build loyal fans. Joey has a reputation of dependable generosity. Joey can help your team, too. Shoot him an email. Set up a dialogue. You may find a synchronicity that is constructive for your projects.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~ ~ ~~ ~ ~~ ~ ~