We had the pleasure of interviewing Austin Tolliver over Zoom video.
Austin Tolliver’s early ambitions were to become a professional athlete. It looked like the Louisiana native was headed that way when he started playing football in college at New Mexico State University (and college baseball at Texas Tech University) and quickly became recognized for his athletic prowess. However, his path changed when he moved to Nashville and fell in love with music.
The country-rap blend of Ride 4 Me displays the eclectic layers of Austin Tolliver's musical talents. “From country to rap to rock, my music is a crossover of different genres. I infuse the music I grew up on into my style,” commented Tolliver. His diverse influences ranged from Tupac, Nelly, Ludacris, 50 Cent and Eminem to George Strait, Tim McGraw, Billy Ray Cyrus, Colt Ford and Shenandoah. Sonic evidence of this can be heard across Tolliver’s debut full-length album, Ride 4 Me.
In college, Tolliver admittedly wasn’t the best student. As long as he excelled at sports, the educational requirements took a back seat. “I was a football and baseball player at New Mexico State University and Texas Tech University. My job as a student athlete was to win games, to sell tickets, break records, and win damn championships. I did just that.” Tolliver’s father, who was an NFL player and called himself “the rednecks’ quarterback,” taught his son to strive to be the best whether on stage or in the stadium as “people paid their hard-earned money to come and be entertained.”
Talent, perseverance and a winning attitude lead Tolliver to the attention of Average Joes Entertainment. The Nashville-based record label signed Tolliver and released his debut single, “Tip My Hat,” in late 2020. His 2021 singles, “Yodelay You Down” and “Ride 4 Me” caught the ears of fans and kept their attention through every new music release after.