Playing the Staircase with Robison


Madeline Cancienne

Department Head of History and Political Science William Robison developed his love for music since childhood.

Madeline Cancienne , Staff Reporter

Beyond his university position, Department Head of History and Political Science William Robison fulfilled his childhood aspirations in music. 

Robison shared that his love for music began at an early age.

“I’ve been playing music all of my life,” said Robison. “I started singing as a little kid and started playing the guitar at around 10, and I have been playing ever since. My whole family were musicians. My parents, my brother who plays professionally actually, my cousins, all of my uncles, and now all of our children are musicians. So, it’s a musical family. It’s what we did when we all got together.”

Robison’s love for music grew as he got older and played in the band for his school. After graduating from college and starting his family, he stopped playing live music and began teaching at the university. Later, Robison joined the rock band Impaired Faculties.

“I got together with a group of musicians here who were all in the same boat, guys who used to play, all guys that had quit because of family, who were ready to do it again,” said Robison. “So, we started a band that lasted about four years called Impaired Faculties, which was a joke due to the fact that we were all old.”

After the band members of Impaired Faculties went their separate ways, Robison joined another band called Snake Hat, which he plays with currently.

Since picking up an instrument, Robison accumulated a number of experiences playing from New Orleans to Hammond.

“I play every first Thursday at the Neutral Ground in New Orleans, and I’ve done a songwriters sessions at the House of Blues and Buffa’s,” said Robison.

Robison’s next local performance will be “Playing the Staircase” held by the Hammond Regional Arts Center.

“When I saw the advertisements for ‘Playing the Staircase,’ I reached out and sent in some songs, and I guess they liked them,” said Robison. “So, I was asked to be part of the first round of people to play at this event.”

Robison shared his thoughts on the upcoming performance.

“I’m looking forward to play there because I’ve been to most of the shows they’ve had already,” said Robison. “It’s really informal. People come in and sit, bring in food, drinks if they’re old enough, and you just play and talk about the songs. The acoustics aren’t great for a big band, but are good for a solo artist to perform.”

Robison will be the final performer of the series on Nov. 30 from 6-8 p.m. at the HRAC.