We had the good fortune of connecting with Angie Goeke and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Angie, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
When something is so engrained in your being- runs thick through your blood- it’s hard to pursue a career in anything else. (And I’ve tried)! I have found that I am happiest and most productive when I am pursuing my music and using my creative mind to make an impact in the things I care about. For me, I finally realized that there was no use in fighting a career as a singer/songwriter. At my very core, it is simply who I am. It is merely authenticity and integrity to who I am created to be for me to pursue a creative career. I love every minute of it, even when it means embracing failures, criticism, and financial hardships.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I have spent the past 16 or so years raising my 4 kids and giving my music a nod every now and again by finding little creative outlets along the way. When all the children were finally in school, I decided, though the encouragement of others, to pursue my songwriting and singing career. Getting started later in life has definitely presented it’s own challenges. But, I have to remember that now my songwriting possesses a maturity that comes from years of experience living a life that most of my listeners can relate to. I am influenced by Ella Fitzgerald, Norah Jones, Willie Nelson, and Brandi Carlile. I love that songs have the ability to mix words and melodies to communicate the feelings and emotions that we can’t seem to express or sometimes even identify. Music has the ability to bring people together through sharing these common human experiences. My goal is to make music that can help bring a voice to the voiceless, belonging to the lonely, and acceptance to the outcast. This is where my work with Not In Our City converges with my creative passion. We use the arts (music, film, and creative education) to raise awareness of domestic sex trafficking. I am honored that my music has found a way to impact my community beyond entertainment, though leaving room for fun is also important! I believe music and the visual arts can make change for the better. This philosophy guides all areas of my life and I teach these same values in the classroom as a part-time elementary and middle school art teacher. None of it has been easy. I began by soaking in all I could from those who were ten steps ahead of me. I have to remain a learner through the process, not being afraid to take risks and ask questions, and devoting time and money when it seems I have none to give. There really is credence to the phrase, “fake it till you make it”. It’s imperative to continue to show up and believe that I have something to learn in every situation. When playing to an empty bar, there’s still something to be gained from the experience. I have to believe that at every gig or writing group I attend, I have something to offer, even if it’s small encouragement to those around me. I’ve had to be malleable and flexible to the changing industry, especially in these times of Covid. And when opportunities seemed to not be available, I have had to learn how to create my own. When I wasn’t getting asked to play at house concerts, I started hosting them. When online gigs were hard to get at the beginning of the Pandemic, I had to create my own online show. My biggest lessons learned are that you can never wait for things to come to you and being genuine and kind is essential. It’s a tough business. But I try to maintain some simple basic principles in everything I do: 1) Always be grateful. 2) I want to be good news for the people I work with. 3) Don’t be a jerk. Ever. 4) Don’t compare or get jealous, remembering that this industry is a small family community with many differing voices and perspectives and our diversity is what makes us important. 4) Be authentic and full of integrity. I am not perfect, so it’s okay to not present myself as such. And if, at the core, I believe music makes the world a better place, then my own music should be outward focused in purpose, with the aim of connecting to others or changing the world. Being the same on stage as I am at home keeps me whole and undivided in those pursuits.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If I had an out-of-town visitor, we would definitely visit some live music venues! My top picks would be the historical Anderson Fair, McGonigel’s Mucky Duck, the Heights Theater, Harold’s in the Heights, and JP Hops. The music would be great, but also the people would be welcoming and show our Houston charm. I’d make sure to treat them to a Joy Love Burger. (It’s heaven in burger form). We’d get Lupe Tortilla fajitas and Taco Adrian’s margaritas. Papa Gyro’s in Katy would also be a lunch time must-have. We’d probably go hang a bit at No Label Brewery in Katy and if possible go catch an Astro’s game. I always enjoy meandering the shops on Montrose, visiting the Houston Zoo and Discovery Green, and of course, taking a quick day trip to the beach.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
For a long time I didn’t feel worthy to follow my passions. However, having the support of family, friends, and a few special groups of friends has made all the difference. They hold me accountable to my goals in the hard times and show unwavering support. Shoutout to my parents, sisters and brother, my besties: Jill and Alicia, the “Red Team”, the “Not-So-High-Way Women”, my “CP ladies”, and my Sunday Songwriter crew. I would have either never started this journey or quit along the way if not for these beautiful people. And special shoutout to my husband and kids who endure every first pass at a new song and every late night concert.
Andrew Richardson Alex Goeke Jessica Pajimula