American folk duo, Tina and her Pony, doesn't actually consist of any equine creatures. The Asheville to Taos act has been touring Southern Florida from the Keys to Davie, and Saturday night, Tina Collins (songwriter, vocals, guitar, banjo, ukulele) and Quetzal Jordan (songwriter, vocals, guitar, cello) will make their last Sunshine State stop at the Beat Cup Cafe
in Delray Beach. Before the show, we caught up with Collins and chatted about profoundly magical experiences and nonstop touring.
New Times: So who's in the band, and how'd you all meet?
Tina Collins: We met through Quetzal's sister, Rama. I was in a band called Over Under Yonder (2006-2010) with Rama and her wife, Ash. I moved to New Mexico from North Carolina in 2008. That is where I recorded my solo album under the name Tina Collins, Journey Onward.
During the recording process, I flew to Asheville to record Rama and Ash's harmony parts, as well as some other key instrumentalists. While in Asheville, Quetzal and I met at an event called Dance Church, where a big group of people dances free form, not talking. Quetzal and I ended up dancing together and having a profound and magical experience together. I toured the album in January and February of 2010 with Over Under Yonder in the Southeast, primarily in Florida.
The tour began in Asheville, North Carolina. Quetzal was still living in Asheville at the time, and I spontaneously invited her to join the tour, since she was at a point where she was very free from ties and ready to leave the city. At the end of the tour, Over Under Yonder dissolved, and Tina & Her Pony was born.
Please describe your music. American folk is kind of a broad term. What or who is your inspiration?
We call it Indie Appalachian Folk. Quetzal has classical training on the cello, so she comes from that background. But from classical playing, she branched out to improvisational cello, playing all kinds of music -- blues, funk, gospel, reggae, rock, folk, bluegrass, etc. My influence comes from mostly a combination of girly, folky stuff -- Ani Difranco, Joni Mitchell, and bluegrass, Joy Kills Sorrow, Sarah Jarosz, Shannon Whitworth. Quetzal is highly influenced by more indie rock -- Radiohead, Coldplay, Smashing Pumpkins, and world music.
You've been touring around the area for a few months now. How are you liking it?
We've been touring in Florida since December 6. We just got back from Key West. We had a great gig down there at an Irish pub. So far, we've basically worked our way down the East coast of Florida. We have a few more shows in this area, Friday in Stuart at Solutions Center for Personal Growth and Saturday in Delray at the Beat Cup.
After that, we'll cross over to the Tampa Bay area and spend the rest of the month working that area. Our last show in Florida this time around, is February 8 in Pensacola. Then working our way West.
We do not live here, but Quetzal was raised in Tampa, and I lived in Tampa for two years. We never knew each other then.
Are you putting together a new album any time soon?
We released our debut album Tina & Her Pony
and a six song EP Walkin' in My Sleep
in March 9, 2012. We've had a lot of ideas for new songs, but they are not fully developed yet, as we stay very
busy on the road, playing about 15 shows a month. We have driven 23,000 miles since we left our home of Taos, New Mexico, this past May and played 120 shows. Our plan is to tour the current albums until Fall 2013 and then take a good long rest and make a new album then. So new album by Fall 2014!