An Interview with Will Banister: Off to Wembely Arena

Jan 15, 2012 by

Will Banister

Michael F. Shaughnessy
Eastern New Mexico University
Portales, New Mexico

1) Will, first of all, your recent album has ” gone viral ” and is being played all across Europe as well as many stations across the U.S. How does it feel ?

This is very exciting. Its very surprising to me that people in the United Kingdom like traditional country music so well. Especially when traditional country music is not that popular here in the U.S.

2) Now, I understand that you are opening for the Oak Ridge Boys soon–or perhaps, they are closing for you…..How did this event come about and where will it take place?

Kevin Jolley who is the manger at the Curry County Events Center asked us to be the opening act. The event will be held at the Curry County Events Center in Clovis, New Mexico on January 20th. Doors will open at 6:00 p.m. and we go on stage at 7:00 p.m. The Oak Ridge Boys are on at 8:00p.m.

3) Next month, you are opening for Reba McIntryre . How did this come about and when exactly when you will be performing?

A man named Tony Byworth from London, came to Clovis, New Mexico. Tony is a previous editor of one of the U.K.’s largest country music publication, Country Music People. Interested in the history of Clovis, New Mexico , he visited the Norman Petty studio, and also Johnny Mulhair’s studio. Johnny gave Tony a few copies of my album “Turned Her On To Country” before he returned to London. Tony then passed the cd’s along to David Allen (contributor to CMP), and Duncan Warwick (Editor of CMP). David Allen first mentioned the album in the August issue, then Duncan reviewed “Turned Her On To Country” and named it CD of the Month in the September issue.

The promoter of The International Festival of Country Music, Mervyn Conn got wind of this and we received a call inviting us to play at the festival.

4) Who are some of the other groups that will be performing with you at Wembley?

Reba, Ricky Skaggs, Charley Pride, Lonestar, and Asleep at the Wheel, will be headlining the event. George Hamilton IV, Joel Sonnier, Narvel Felts, Geroge Ducas, and Raymond Froggat will also be performing.

5) I hear that you are working on a new album. How is that coming along?

We’ve actually got a couple projects in the works. We are close to completing a cover album, and we’ve just started working on another original album.

6) Could you tell us about your group- (all of whom are stellar performers in their own right).

Yes, they are. Johnny Mulhair is our guitar player and was named one of the top ten guitarists in the nation after producing Le Ann Rhimes’ Blue album. Jill Mulhair is our Bass Player and is one of the finest singers around. Our drummer, Duane Castleberry, also is one of best vocalists around this area. Paul Goad, is a great piano player, and you’d be hard pressed to find a better one!

5) Will you be playing any special music for the Wembley event?

We will be playing several songs from the album, as well as a few cover songs.

6) Will you be available for a follow up interview after you return?

I’d be glad to do a follow up interview.

8) Do you have a web site where readers can learn more about you?

Yes I do, it is www.willbanister.com. you can also find Will Banister and the Mulberry Band on facebook.

9) What have I neglected to ask?

I think you’ve pretty well covered it all and I appreciate the interview. I’ll be looking forward to talking with you again.

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