Artist: Hush Kids (Jill Andrews + Peter Groenwald)
Hometown: Peter – La Grange, Illinois; Jill – Johnson City, Tennessee
Latest album: Hush Kids
Personal nicknames (or rejected band names): Peter Butter and Jilly. Peter: P-Train, Pizza Man. Jill: Dill, Jer, Jerry, Poi, Jilly.
What’s the toughest time you ever had writing a song?
There are some things that I feel deeply but have a hard time writing about. In this case I’m either protecting myself, or protecting the subject from a song that I don’t think would do the subject justice. I started a lullaby for my daughter before she was born. After many hours on many days of working on this song, it is still unfinished. She is 4.5 years old. She is precious. I wish I could be a little less precious with the damn song so she could actually hear it while she still likes me to sing her to sleep. — Peter
If you had to write a mission statement for your career, what would it be?
Follow the muse wherever it leads — other people’s opinions be damned. — Jill
What rituals do you have, either in the studio or before a show?
I pace a lot, especially in the studio when writing. It’s the way I can shake things up if I feel stuck. I’ll leave the room and walk around. It often helps me find perspective for a missing line or a necessary change in direction. Until recently, I used smoking for short breaks from the room. Although my walkabouts are probably disruptive to some, they’re healthier for me! — Peter
Which elements of nature do you spend the most time with and how do those impact your work?
I live on about 17 acres, 10 of which I mow once a week. It takes a lot of time, and can cause anxiety when it’s looming above a full schedule. But, once I actually start the process, there’s nothing to do but think and look around. Sometimes that time helps clear my head, sometimes it makes it busier, but either way it seems necessary and not up to me. Also, there is something powerful and charging about routinely tracing the same path on every walkable foot of our land. The dips and bumps become more familiar and less hazardous. — Peter
Since food and music go so well together, what is your dream pairing of a meal and a musician?
I once watched Weird Al Yankovic play at a State Fair while eating a turkey leg. Made sense to me then. — Jill
Photo credit: Fairlight Hubbard