"It's not just writing a song in five minutes or whatever and calling it a song. That's just a skeleton," he says. "You've got to rewrite and edit. I'm learning the craft from really great songwriters like David Newhouser and Mark Addison. I've been at it a long time, but I'm still learning this craft. I can take a lot of knowledge from people who've been writing songs for 30 or 40 years, and the more I can learn from everybody, the better off I am. It helps me to learn everybody else's style and craft in songwriting and melody writing."
Songs on "Something to Believe In" look at love, of course, but range across a rainbow of other subjects too.
Addison and Singh's "8 Roses" take a human look at sidewalk vendors.
"Living in Austin, you pass one of these guys every day on the side of the road," Andrews says. "He is not asking for handouts. He is trying to make a living as a roadside businessman by selling roses wrapped in cellophane from a plastic bucket. Next time you see one of these hard working businessmen, stop and buy a rose for someone special."
"March of Life," an Andrews co-write with Seth Harrison, looks at life and career changes.
"It seems we are taught to graduate from school, get a job, get married, have kids and then retire. Not many people take chances, which is okay," Andrews says. "However, I think there are regrets with not taking chances and not following your dreams. Doing what I do is a dream. It seems that so many friends and acquaintances tell me their dreams. They wanted to be actors, singers, dancers and other risky professions. But for some reasons, good or bad, they decided to go the safe route. We only have one shot at this life, and regrets should not be a part of it."
Andrews even turns toward the church on one song, "I'm Here."
"I'm not much into church, but I am pretty spiritual. I have never written a Christian song until now," he says. "God is here at all times, when we are down and when we are up, loving us the same and always keeping a loving, watchful eye over us. That is what unconditional love is all about."
Andrews taught special education at a middle school before music took him on the road full time.
The touring increased to the point where Anrews bagged the day job and became a full-time musician.
Honeybrowne does 150-170 or so gigs a year now, mostly in Texas and the surrounding states except for a more-or-less annual southeastern U.S. tour. The band has also toured twice now opening for Pat Green.
What little rowdiness there is in the band shows up in the live shows rather than on CD.
"The band is a talented bunch of guys who know how to play to a song and have a great time on stage," Andrews says. "They take my ideas and put their own ideas in and come up with something really unique for the live shows. Our live shows are a little more edgy than the CD. There's a little more tendency to rock out every once in a while at shows. We have such a great bunch of people who come see us. Everybody who buys an album and comes to shows, it's not the first time; it's the second or third, and they bring friends. It's a good deal. I wish it on every musician I know."
With the new CD, the schedule is becoming a little more hectic.
"For a while, we're going to be touring probably 25 days a months," Andrews says. "We're going to pound this album into people's heads and get it into the hands of everybody who wants a copy."