Being part of the Teton Basecamp Crew is pretty much the greatest job I’ve ever had. I met John Hancock, midsummer 2016, when he visited the Teton TV studio with members of The National Parks. Now, it’s late spring of 2017 and I’m sitting at my desk with 30 minutes left of a very long day, drafting questions to ask him for this blog post. I’ll admit to being a tad short on sleep and my mind is beginning to wander. Big thanks to John for being the newest member of our Artist team, for answering all my questions and for, most importantly, sharing his talents with all of us. I hope you enjoy reading through this as much as I did.

Until next time,

— Jenn

P.S. Just like no one will admit to having a favorite child, I don’t know if I should announce that John is my fave member of TNP….. but really it’s their tour manager, Madi.

If you could only eat one meal for the rest of 2017, what would it be?

I would definitely have to go with mashed potatoes and gravy. Or biscuits and gravy. Anything with gravy.

Who are your musical inspirations?

My all-time favorites are Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, Bonnie Raitt, and The Smiths. Lately, I’ve been listening to a lot of Aoife O’Donovan, Ryan Adams and Andy Shauf.

How long have you been playing guitar?

14 years.

Do you play any other instruments?

I also play drums, piano, and bass.

I heard you used to play with another band. How did you get hooked up with TNP?

I was playing with a few different bands in Provo in 2012 and had seen Brady around at shows. He liked what I was doing with the other bands and one day he asked me to come jam with the band. I joined about a month before we recorded Young, which was definitely not long enough for me to learn all the songs! But I didn’t screw that album up too much.

I also heard you’re a self proclaimed tone snob. Can you elaborate on that?

Well, as a musician, you start to have a more discerning ear as you develop your craft. You want better tools and you want your tools to inspire your playing, whether that be guitars, pedals, amps, etc. That’s why I’m proud to be a Teton Artist. Teton Guitars sound incredible and take my playing to another level!

Where do you go for songwriting inspiration?

I get a lot of inspiration from great songwriters and old movies. I’m also most inspired to write when I’m sad, so I don’t write a lot of happy songs.

What’s superior, the cat or the dog?  

Cats are definitely superior. Anybody can be loved by a dog, but it takes lots of hard work to be chosen and loved by a cat.

You’re stranded on an island, with 5 pieces of musical equipment; what are they?

An acoustic guitar, piano, tape recorder, record player and a copy of Joni Mitchell’s Hejira on vinyl.

What stage do you see yourself on in 5 years?

One of my life goals is to play Austin City Limits, so I’ll shoot for that!

How many siblings do you have?

I only have 1 older sister. She’s the best.

How many guitars do you own?

8 currently, but there’s always room for one more!

What’s your favorite color?

I really like turquoise and I’ve always wanted to paint a guitar with an awesome metallic turquoise finish.

You win a contest for your mad riff skills; the prize is 1 million dollars. What do you do with the cash?

I’d buy my mom a place near the ocean and get a ton of music/recording gear with the rest.

Is there anyone who’s pushed you in your musical abilities?

I think I’ve pushed myself more than anyone else has. I set very high expectations for myself. Most of the time I don’t meet my expectations and get depressed, but I eventually get back up and learn from my failures.

Who’s your biggest fan?

My mom is totally my biggest fan and has always given me tons of encouragement.

Stick shift or automatic transmission?

I used to be a stick shift guy but it makes eating and driving pretty hard, so I’ll say automatic because fries are life.

You can only watch 3 movies for the rest of your life; what are they?

Rear Window, Wayne’s World, and Back to the Future.

Is being in the studio recording new music exhausting?

It’s incredibly exhausting, mentally and emotionally. You’re always looking for the best ideas and it pushes you as a player. It’s hard because you care a lot about what you’re doing and opinions and personalities can differ, but you can’t let that get in the way of your relationships or the music.

Who’s your favorite member of the Teton Basecamp crew?

I don’t know if I can pick a favorite because everybody is so awesome! But probably Jenn.

Of all the places you’ve traveled on tour, what’s your favorite venue?

I love playing Rockwood Music Hall in NYC. It’s always a crazy, fun, hectic experience, and always memorable.