Blue October's Justin Furstenfeld Says He's In a Different Place Now

Categories: Only In Houston

Photo by Groovehouse
Justin Furstenfeld at Sam Houston Race Park in 2010
Justin Furstenfeld, the 37-year-old front man, vocalist and creative force behind Texas rockers Blue October, has turned a corner, both lyrically and in his personal life. His band's new album, Sway, released today, is a far cry from 2011's angst-ridden Any Man In America, which was written while Furstenfeld was going through both a divorce and a custody battle for his daughter.

While on tour in support of the band's previous album at the time, 2009's Approaching Normal, Furstenfeld had an interview with the Houston Press, which, to put it lightly, didn't go all that smoothly. The interview and background behind it became John Nova Lomax's controversial "Little Boy Blue" cover story, which appeared in June 2010 and outraged many among the Blue October faithful. A little more than three years later, though, the singer-songwriter sounds content to let the past be the past.

"I'm in a different place now," Furstenfeld says. "The last time I was interviewed by you guys, I was in the middle of losing my mind. It was a really dark time in my life, and I kind of lost my way for a while."

Blue October toured extensively during the Any Man era. Furstenfeld was hoping that someone, anyone, would hear his story and that one day he would wake up, and things would be different.

"That was just an album that had to be written," he says. "It wasn't for album sales; it was an album about divorce and losing time with your child.

"I was hoping that album would change laws," Furstenfeld continues, his voice dripping with contempt for his own arrogance. Then he sighs, pauses and continues with a chuckle, "but it didn't happen that way. Instead, it came across as me fighting a lost cause."

He was on the road, away from home, from his family and, despite all his efforts, he still wasn't allowed to see his daughter.

"I began drinking heavily and using again, because it was the only thing that could fight off the pain," Furstenfeld says, "and I lost what I was fighting for."

So what changed? In a word, perspective. Instead of continuing to bemoan the way things were, Furstenfeld decided to change himself for the better. At the behest and ultimatum of his friends and family, he checked himself into rehab and reemerged with a new outlook on life.

"There's no excuse for it," he remembers his wife telling him. "Get off your ass. Be a real father and a real man."

Some kind of woman.

Furstenfeld says of his wife, "This is the first girl, the first person, really, to look at me and go, 'Shut up. You think you're all that? Not right now. But I know you have it in you.'"

His life has changed, and fans will hear as much in his new music.

"The difference in the music is that I didn't write another album about how hard life is for Justin Furstenfeld," he says with a chuckle. "I mean, you're blessed to have this awesome job making music, so show them where you are now, where the band is now."

Story continues on the next page.

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I really do hope that he is in a better place and able to see his daughter more.  He did seem to deeply care about her. 

Amy McMullen
Amy McMullen

That's what happens when you find a Good Woman! You forget yourself and free fall into the arms of someone who loves you! They hold until you quit screaming!


@BobbyFreshpants @Natureboy Name the lyric that sucks. Every Blue October lyric is written from direct personal experience of agony or an approaching hope. 

In all of your claims you failed to provide any proof of why you THINK they suck. Which of course, dismisses anything else you say...anyway, you judge on one song? Check out "X Amount of Words" and tell me where the so called bad lyrics are...or even in "Hate Me"...or "The Feel Again" or "The End" or "Follow Through" or "The Answer"...God, it goes on and on...that's cuz Blue October does not write bad lyrics...damn, if you were the world's critic that people had to please, then there would be no music on the planet.

I would hate to see what's on your IPOD...Miley Cyrus, One Direction, Backstreet Boys, etc. etc.

Actually, Blue October's music, lyrics, song structure and even prosody is equaled by no one else.

Name one and then show me examples.
You can't.
i'll bet you had an ex that liked Blue you feel OBLIGATED to hate them.

Blue October, one of the last true rock bands on earth...future legends with the ULTIMATE staying power to adapt to any era without ever compromising their SUBSTANCE.

BobbyFreshpants topcommenter

@fairchildryan2 @Natureboy If you really think they are one of the last true rock bands on Earth you need to take a good hard look in the mirror! 

I listened to X Amount of Words and they sound like a emo Linkin Park wannabe

And no, you will not find any top 40 on my ipod. So you lose there as well. 

No one has even heard of this band outside of the USA.

BobbyFreshpants topcommenter

@Natureboy Where is the substance here? terrible music, terrible lyrics, trying way to hard. 


....Well then you just dont get it. I feel sorry for you cause you are missing out on a great musical experience!

Jef Rouner
Jef Rouner

"Been replaced by Dan Reynolds" is a new place, apparently


@Jef Withonef I'm a huge fan of both bands. But a little known fact for your day: Back in 2009, Blue October was opening for Train at the Bite of Las Vegas festival. Train had to cancel at the last minute. The radio station sponsoring the event consulted with Blue on what to do. Blue heard that a Vegas band called Imagine Dragons recently won the battle of the bands the station put on prior. SO, Dan Reynolds got his little band together and ended up opening for Blue October, even coming in to help out with a song if my memory serves me well. Either way, both bands ended up meeting and Justin gave some great advice to a band that is now PLATINUM. If anything, Dan has used Blue October's albums and success to further their career - and more power to them. I love both bands and enjoy everything their doing for the music industry.


Different place maybe, but same weak music and same dbag


@foolio your name suits you..may the fleas of a 100 camels infest your armpits....the music is brilliant and he is far from a douche bag though i am sure your the epitomy of one


@foolio I don't normally comment on these things but I just wanted to say that I feel sorry for you.  It's actually really sad that you are not able to see his beauty and the amazing talent that he has been given.  A rocky life - yes, dark lyrics - yes but incredibly talented - yes. If you feel their music is week and are not a fan why did you bother reading the article and commenting? Seems like you wasted your own time so one last question who's the dbag now? Just saying...

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