Rocks Off reached out to the artists playing this year's Houston Press Music Awards showcase Sunday, August 5, and asked them to introduce themselves. Here's what they sent back.
Rocks Off: When and where was your first gig in Houston, and how did it go?
Tianna Hall: I was playing at a gay piano bar called the Briar Patch that used to be open behind South Beach and JR's off of Fairview. I sang a lot of show tunes and diva songs.
Jerry Atwood accompanied me and I played there for about a year and a half. It was a blast and it was a good place to cut my teeth outside of theater.
RO: What Houston-area venues do you play most often?
TH: I've been at Sambuca every other Monday for almost nine years (yikes!) and I play at a new wine bar called Solea at on Shepherd, plus Cezanne, Kirby's in the Woodlands, Memorial Wine Cellar and the Rainbow Lodge.
RO: How often do you play in the area?
TH: Anywhere from four to seven days a week.
RO: Describe your sound in eight words or less.
TH: Swanky, swinging, sophisticated and sexy.
RO: How did you come up with your name?
TH: Well I was born with it, kitty cat. The band I work with is called The Houston Jazz Band, but they were originally called the Mighty Pretty Orchestra. My fellas are kinda crusty and grumpy, though, and they hated the name so we switched it a few years ago.
RO: Where would you like yourself or your band to be in one year? Ten years? Forty?
TH: One year: doing the same thing we're doing now. I've got another bun in the oven so I'll be sticking close to home a year from now. Ten years: I'd love for us to do some more international shows and jazz festivals and have a few Grammys under our belt.
Forty years: I'll be 73 and I'll have to throw my boobs up onstage before I get up there. Nah, by then I'll probably have a different pair. I'll have had at least two kids, and they're not so nice to the boobage.
RO: What is one thing you'd like to do (as a musician) before you pack it in?
TH: I WANT A GRAMMY! But I'm never packing it in. You are all stuck with me and my nerdy jazz music until I croak. Viva la jazz!
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Tianna Hall plays the HPMA showcase 6 p.m. Sunday, August 5, at Lucky Strike Lounge & Lanes, 1201 San Jacinto.