Locals to be on 'Tonight Show'

2013-04-24T13:32:00Z 2013-04-25T14:20:04Z Locals to be on 'Tonight Show'Stan Maddux Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
April 24, 2013 1:32 pm  • 

A Michigan City native has reached another milestone in his musical career with his second appearance tonight on "The Tonight Show."

Justin Andres, along with Johnzo West, a graduate of LaPorte County's New Prairie High School, will play in the band for country music star Billy Ray Cyrus for "The Tonight Show" audience.

"It's very exciting," said Andres, a 1996 graduate of Michigan City High School.

Andres got his start in Cyrus' band six months ago playing the bass guitar. Since then he has appeared on "The Tonight Show" and "Good Morning America."

"For me, my dream is to make music with great people everyday and touch people's lives, and I've been able to do that quite a bit through all of the many opportunities I've had," Andres said.

His grandfather, Randy Miller, said he can't wait to see Andres, who plans to catch a flight after his "Tonight Show" appearance to be at his grandfather's 90th birthday party Saturday.

"I think it's really great," said Miller, who was mayor in Michigan City for two terms in the 1960s and 1970s.

Musical talent apparently runs in the family. Miller is a former violin player in the LaPorte County Symphony Orchestra.

"We practiced together," Miller said.

Andres lives in Los Angeles where he moved 10 years ago to pursue his dream of making the big time in the music industry.

He later reunited with West, a guitar player he knew from playing in Michigan City and other venues in the Region prior to both men landing in California.

West was already playing for Cyrus and had done some work for Miley Cyrus, when Andres was invited to join the celebrity's band.

He said Cyrus is going to perform his new song, ''Hillbilly Heart'' during his appearance with Jay Leno.

"It's the first time for me really playing with a household name and it's a lot of fun. It's cool," Andres said.

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