LOCAL Houston | The City Guide MAY 2015 - Page 52

Local May_Final.qxp_002houston 4/23/15 12:20 PM Page 52 COLLIN MCHUGH A MAN OF MANY TALENTS Astros starter Collin McHugh once joked he was “the dumb jock of the family.” But he’s much more than a jock, and certainly far from dumb. The 27-year-old finds himself in the starting pitching rotation for the ASTROS, but still finds time to pen his own blog and even play a few instruments. Music is more of a family gene than baseball, he admits. McHugh’s brother and sister (Evan and Eryn) are songwriters in Nashville, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t dabble in music a little himself. One thing he packs on road trips? His ukulele. Jayme: So your brother and sister are into music? Collin: Both are songwriters. My brother does more of the acoustic, full key stuff and my sister writes with a bunch of different people – she does a lot in Nashville. I grew up playing instruments, enjoying music and ended up doing this (baseball)… J: Does it help you relax? C: Yeah, I think for me anything that can take my mind off of baseball does. It’s something I’ve been doing for a long time – I’ve been playing instruments before I was playing baseball so it goes back a long way. It’s something I’m passionate about. Whenever I get a chance to play with other guys, to pick around at the guitar, it’s a good time. J: If you could hang with any musician – dead or alive? C: Probably Jeff Buckley – he’s kind of a freak. His voice is incredible, he’s a great musician, son of Tim Buckley and music is in his blood. I’d just sit and pick his brain. Obviously he’s not around anymore so it’s tough; he was in the prime of his career. J: Do you play any instruments or have a good voice? C: I played clarinet growing up. Once I got into high school I started playing a little saxophone and then drums. I picked up guitar and recently started playing the ukulele. It’s a nice little travel instrument for me. J: Favorite music? C: I’m probably more into toned down stuff. I enjoy a lot of types of music. I’m from Atlanta and there’s a big hip-hop influence in Atlanta so obviously I really like hip-hop and R&B. It’s hard to beat Outkast (they represent Atlanta). Outkast, T.I. and Drake. Other than that probably some singer/songwriter stuff I grew up listening to like Bryan Adams and Jeff Buckley. Let’s just say I like good music – hard rock is tough unless I’m in the weight room. J: If you could only listen to one Pandora station the rest of the season? C: That’s a good question! Right now I would have to say I am into the new Purity Ring album – it’s so good. I’d probably put it on that and rock out – it’s pretty solid. J: What do your teammates say about that? C: I don’t know – it’s a mix batch. Some guys see it and they’re like, ‘What is that – I don’t even know what that is!’ J: I’m not sure I know what a ukulele is. C: It’s kind of a Hawaiian island string instrument – basically a little guitar. 52 L O C A L | may 15 J: Have you checked out any Houston venues? C: Last year I saw Ingrid Michaelson at House of Blues. I think Sufjan Stevens is playing on one of our off days – I’m going to try and see them. Check out McHugh’s blog where he talks about life and baseball – adayolderadaywiser.com By Jayme Lamm Photography Courtesy of Houston Astros