Since 1970, country musicican Bill Hearne has been winning 'em over and flat-pickin' his way into our hearts. Since 1992, he's done so in the bar at the Hotel La Fonda, La Fiesta Lounge. Hearne celebrates his 25th anniversary there this Tuesday with a veritable cavalcade of surprise guests and that trademarked sound and wit that has won him prestigious honors in SFR's Best of Santa Fe more than a few times over.
Wow. 25 years? How are you feeling about that?
I'm feeling pretty humbled, I'll tell you. It's just unprecedented, I think. Probably in Santa Fe, anyway. Probably in a lot of places. For somebody to play in the same venue for 25 years I think ... it's pretty special, so I must be doing something right. And I cannot be more grateful to them. I've played lots of other venues, but to be every week for 48 or 49 weeks a year, well, I'm pretty proud of that.
We've heard rumors that your wife, Bonnie, will make an appearance at the show. Is that true?
Y'know, Bonnie had to retire in 2003, but I'll tell you—she's fully planning on being there. She's planning on jumping up with me and singing two or three songs. Vocally, she's still very respectable. She's going to be on our new album, the Hearne Family album with my nephew Michael and some other people, but as for this show, I'm at about 99 percent that she's gonna be there.
Any advice for musicians after such a long and storied career?
An old curmudgeon friend of mine used to say, 'Crunch your apples and play your tunes,' and I think that's pretty good. Some people disagree with me, but I've learned not to get political. I've been successful by not taking things personally and I've tried to contribute positively. Treat people right and be professional. That's what's kept me alive.