Our Austin360 Artist of the Month for August is Monte Warden & the Dangerous few, who we featured in a full story earlier this month (and in the video above, shot at our studio).
Here’s a little more from our conversation with Warden, who also leads country band the Wagoneers.
Austin360: Do you want to keep the Dangerous Few and the Wagoneers repertoires entirely separate?
Monte Warden: No, no. At first I did. At first I was going, “Yeah, we want to keep this here, and this there.: But as Brandi and I were writing these things, I just went, OK, the Wagoneers could do “Here Kitty Kitty,” I can hear that. And the Dangerous Few could do “Take You There,” off the new [Wagoneers] record. But lyrically and chordally, there aren’t that many things that could cross over without just sounding forced, I think, in both situations. But one of the things I’m looking forward to, once we get a bit more established, is that I can certainly hear the Dangerous Few taking a turn at “Desperately,” because it’s been such a huge part of the Wagoneers live show.
That’s the song you co-wrote with Bruce Robison, which became a big hit for George Strait. When did the Wagoneers start playing it?
We started doing it quite on accident. We were playing a gig up in Montana, and a woman came up to Brent and said, “I know y’all write your own stuff, but do y’all do any George Strait?” And Brent came up to me and he goes, “Warden, do we know any Strait songs?” And I went, “Well, ‘Desperately.’ (Laughs) And he went, “Man, I’m sorry, I forgot!” So, we started doing “Desperately” in the show.
And the crazy thing about it is, in this age, when we do “Desperately” and I introduce it, the audience lights up, literally — their phones. I guess people look it up – they go, “that son of a bitch didn’t write a George Strait song!” Or something. (Laughs) We’ve started putting it earlier and earlier in the set, because it changes people’s perception. They go, “Oh, here’s a big ol’ hit that I know.” So I can certainly hear the Dangerous Few doing, taking a turn on that. The chorus to “Desperately” certainly lends itself to it, because it’s a very soaring male vocalist type of chorus.
And no matter where I’m playing, whether it’s the Wagoneers or the Dangerous Few, or a songwriter night, people always request “Just to Hear Your Voice” [from Warden’s 1993 self-titled solo debut]. And that musically would make sense for the Dangerous Few. But not yet. I just want to get a bit more established with this set of songs that people have not heard anywhere else. But, yeah, there’ll be some cross-pollinization, I’m sure.”