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Friday, March 18 • 12:45am - 1:45am
Hector Ward & the Big Time

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Some people just have a star quality about them, as if they were born ready for the big time. Hector Ward is one of those people. The leader of the Austin-based Latin Funk and Country Soul Band, Hector Ward and the Big Time, explains “My grandparents nicknamed me Hollywood Hector when I was just three years old.” Hector was born to Cuban refugee parents who fled Castro’s communist regime. Spanish was the language, and Cuban was the music, that filled the family home. Although he only spoke Spanish on his first day of kindergarten, he grew up 100% Texan, riding dirt bikes at the family ranch and playing sports (football and baseball) in school in Damon. Around age 13 he picked up the guitar and started to play. Like most young lads with an axe his early influences included Led Zepplin and Jimi Hendrix. He spent hours pouring over Catfish Blues and Over the Hills and Far Away. His love for these classics endures and a Zepplin cover often makes the Hector Ward and the Big Time set list today. In addition to his success on both the grid iron and diamond in the highly competitive world of Texas high school sports, Hector continued to perform and generally live up to his “Hollywood” legend throughout high school. He performed in plays and musicals including Annie Get your Gun. When it was time to go to college on a football scholarship he followed the time tested method of getting-as-far-away-from-home-as-possible and settled on Midwestern State in Witchita Falls. He played linebacker & defensive end & tight end in the fall, and bounced around the baseball field with as a hitter who could deliver, and play the field as well. After a year in far flung Witchita Falls he was back home, sorting out his life and examining prospects for the future. On one average-as-any night back home a tired Hector was urged by some friends to head in to Houston to party. Hector wasn’t really up for it, but went anyway. On the way home he fell asleep at the wheel and crashed his truck. He flew out the back window and broke his neck. The initial prognosis was that he would be paralyzed from the neck down. Fortunately, for music lovers everywhere, his arms were in good working order and he passed long, pain-filled hours playing his guitar in the hospital. When he left Midwestern State he knew he wanted to move to Austin and start a band, and the accident did nothing but strengthen his resolve to do so. Wheelchair bound, with lots of friends and family in Austin for support, Hector put several bands together over the course of a few short years. First “Thirsty” then the “Clay Pigeons,” both loosely described as Acoustic Folk, Americana. Both gained local notoriety, and after the Clay Pigeons name was ripped off in 2005, Hector put the band back together under the name “Sigmund Fraud.” Again, local notoriety followed as the Hector and guitarist Adam Jumper soldiered on, exploring the (then popular) jam band genre and dabbling in reggae and hip hop sounds. The band’s only album “Pink Blackmail” won them a following and local radio airplay but Hector was having problems keeping a drummer in the lineup and personnel issues ultimately let to the demise of “the Fraud.” Whatever Hector is working on, he’s always looking ahead to the next big thing. His 15 years of experience building bands in the “Live Music Capital of the World” and a lifetime of musical passion are now focused in a single direction: Hector Ward and the Big Time. The current 9-piece band has been together for 3 years and has enjoyed every minute together playing in gigs around Austin. When asked about what he wants to accomplish with his current project Hector breaks it down like this, ”We’re just all about having a good time, I mean, at the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about, come on out, enjoy some tunes and have fun.” Hector Ward and the Big Time are: Hector Ward – Vocals, Guitars and Banduria Mike McGurk - Drums, Vibes and various percussive instruments. Mike hails from Salt Lake City, Utah. His classical musical training brings true rhythmic thunder to the Big Time. Mike has been professionally touring and playing music for over 25 years. He now calls Austin, Texas home. Scott Beardsley – Bass Guitars. Scott has been playing bass for over 25 years. Originally from Pittsburgh, PA., he won his first “Battle of the Bands” at 18, and has been gigging and recording professionally ever since. Scott brings a solid rhythm foundation to the band. Cari Hutson– Vocals Cari Hutson is the White Aretha Franklin. She is a high energy vocalist that commands the stage with a presence un-matched. She is also fronts Cari Hutson & Good Co., so check it out! Phil Roach – Guitars Phil is an artist in every since of the word. He is a gifted musician who has been playing drums and guitar for over 15 years. His guitar playing is reminiscent of many great rock and blues musicians. His beefy guitar tones add resilience to the Big Time. Phil is an Austin, Texas native. David Farris – Congas and various percussive instruments. Dave has been playing music professionally for over 15 years. He brings great rhythmic grooves that add to the full sound of the band. He is the owner and operator of the Underground Opera House recording studio in Austin, Texas. Tiger Anaya - Trumpet Tiger dusted off that old high school horn in 2004 with the goal of playing in Austin's best horn section. Influenced by the big sounds of Tejano bands such as Little Joe y La Familia and the smooth flow of Trumpeter Herb Alpert, Tiger truly believes horns make a band sound better! Mitch Montez – Saxophones Mitch is truly a gifted musician who has been playing the saxophone for most of his 21 years. His Jazz and Blues roots bring a true thick sound to the band. Mitch is truly a Jazz prodigy. Matt Price –Trombone Matt is a true Austin, Texas native. He brings great song writing ability influenced by funk and jazz greats such as Coltrane and Davis, Mingus and more. He IS the big bone in the Big Time!

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Hector Ward & the Big Time

The son of Cuban refugees who met in Texas, Ward's sixteen years of experience in the Austin music scene, including his previous band Sigmund Fraud, are obvious in the band's high energy, dance-floor filling shows. The members include Ward on guitar and lead vocals, Cari Hutson on... Read More →

Friday March 18, 2011 12:45am - 1:45am CDT
Saxon Pub

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