James Otto Knows It’s a Hit When His Wife Is ‘Turned On’
James Otto knows a good song when he sees it ... or, more importantly, when his wife Amy hears it.
Although he may listen to a number of people when it comes to picking songs to record, the one 'voice' he tunes into most closely is that of his wife Amy.
"I run all my songs by Amy," the singer-songwriter tells The Boot. "I'm trying to do this whole country, soul, sexy thing, and if I play something for her, and she's not turned on, well it's not going on the record!"
"I'm the core demographic!," Amy insists. "So if it moves me, and I'm into it .. .and if it doesn't, I'm honest about it. And I want to be the muse for his music."
Whatever her opinion of one of his tunes, Amy usually has one question for her hubby: "That song is about me, right?!'"
James, who got interested in country music in high school, dreamed about singing his whole life. "I was into all kinds of music, I started right around in my sophomore year, started getting more and more into country music and trying to figure that stuff out. I was still into Eddie Van Halen and people like that. I wanted to be a guitar player more than I wanted to be a singer [back then]. Anybody that knew me well knew that's who I was and that's what I wanted to be."
While his interest in a country-music career started in high school, his love for singing began much earlier. "I've been singing since I was four years old and have been involved in music in some way or another ever since then," says the native of Washington state. "I didn't know how it was going to work out, but I knew that's what I was after. That's what I was working for every day. I almost flunked out of high school because of my obsession with my guitar. I played 8 to 10 hours a day."
When it comes to picking songs, the couple will soon have another opinion to consider. They announced earlier this week that they're going to have their first child later this year.