“Jackie Venson is truly an Austin legend in the making.”
Jackie Venson was born and raised in Austin, Texas, as the youngest of nine children. Her father, Andrew Venson, has been singing and rocking the bass guitar for nearly half a century. Jackie Venson credits her father’s musical influence for playing a crucial role in her development as a musician. You could say Andrew’ Venson's “little girl” is a chip off the old block, but Jackie Venson has spent the last decade paving her own path in the Texas music scene.
From a very young age, Venson was classically trained as a pianist, but during her senior year at Berklee College of Music, she picked up an electric guitar and discovered a new passion. It wasn’t long before she found herself shredding a six-string in the national spotlight.
After more than three years on guitar, Venson entered the “Modern Southern Music Contest” and officially launched her music career. Venson won a headlining spot on the Belk Summer Tour, which included the opportunity to open for country music stars Jason Aldean, Tim McGraw and James Taylor. In 2016, at the age of 26, Venson made her national television debut when she performed on stage with Mac Miller and the Late Show Band on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert." She returned to the show two years later for a three-night stand on guitar and vocals.
More recently, Venson joined multi-Grammy Award winner Gary Clark Jr. on his national tour last year, and her popularity has skyrocketed from the momentum of new fans and new territory. For Venson, however, fame takes a back seat.
After touring the U.S. and performing overseas, Venson has already seen more of the world than many people will see in a lifetime - but she still believes there’s no place like home when you’re a Texas-born musician.
“Are you kidding me? I couldn’t experience this anywhere else! Texas is the greatest place in America to play and make a living off of music," she said. "I’m gonna make that bold statement right there. On TV. On television in front of God and everybody! I’m gonna tell everybody that Texas is the greatest state to be a working musician! It really is.”
“The amount of incredible people in this state is just a testament to how supportive this state is of its music. People like Willie Nelson, the Dixie Chicks, Beyonce, Buddy Holly, St. Vincent… people like that wouldn’t have gotten to where they got to if it weren’t for the support of this state. There’s a reason why we swept up - we cleaned up at the Grammys. There’s a reason why. Because we love our music, man! We go out, and we go to Gruene Hall, and we two-step, and the band better be there! You know what I’m saying? Or else there ain’t no party, and if there ain’t no party, there’s gonna be riots! Texas needs to party. We love our music, and I love living here.”