About the Band

Hot Pickin 57s is a professional 4-piece band out of Austin that's been entertaining audiences like yours since 2016. We're playing music loved all over Texas, including standards and originals in Bluegrass, Classic Country, Texas Roots and Americana.

 Eddie Collins, musician

Eddie Collins

Vocals / Banjo / Guitar / Mandolin

Eddie Collins is a long-time staple of the Austin music scene, having performed with many of the area’s top acoustic groups. He has nine solo CDs, which include many original tunes that can be heard on over twenty-five commercially released recordings.

Eddie is one of the foremost instructors in acoustic music for mandolin, flatpick guitar and 5-string banjo. He has authored more than 30 books and DVD courses. He writes features for numerous music publications, and conducts instructional workshops throughout the U.S., has served as the president of the Central Texas Bluegrass Association, and has been a disc jockey for local bluegrass radio programs.

 Vance Hazen, musician

Vance Hazen

Upright Bass / Vocals

Born in Montana, raised in Ohio
Eagle Scout
Plays electric and upright bass in a bunch of bands
Based out of Austin since ‘97
Toured all over U.S., Europe and Japan with a bunch of bands
Hope to drive through Central America to surf at some point
Collects vintage bicycles, coin op, and music re-producers
Believes in live and let live
Attending ACC for fun, will see where it goes

 Mike Montgomery, musician

Michael Montgomery

Fiddle / Vocals

Michael started classical violin training at age 10, but grew up also immersed in recordings of Old Timey and Bluegrass music, and began fiddling almost immediately.

While he continued to study violin at college, his other love, science, led him to a PhD in Astronomy from the University of Texas at Austin. Since graduating in 1998, Mike has been working as a professional astronomer, and his research has led him to jobs in Vienna, Cambridge, UK, and finally back to Austin. Since his return in 2004, he has played with Whit Smith's Hot Jazz Caravan, local artists such as Alan Munde, Billy Bright, and Eddie Collins, and now Hot Pickin 57s.

 Max Zimmer, musician

Max Zimmet

Guitar / Mandolin

Max is a graduate of Berklee College of Music with majors in guitar and mandolin performance. He started at 8 on classical guitar, but got hooked on Bluegrass a couple years later after seeing Bill Monroe on Austin City Limits. He's been playing in venues in Central Texas and beyond since his early teens.
Max plays in Hot PIckin 57s, One Eye Open and the Eddie Collins & Max Zimmet duo. He also teaches guitar and mandolin in a private studio in Austin Texas.

Max has played on stage with Mark Cosgrove (David Bromberg band), Bebbe Gambetta, Sierra Hull, Howard Kalish (Texas Swing Music Hall of Fame), Jon Kemppainen (Squirrel Nut Zippers), among others.

You were one of our best bands ever, and everyone will be talking about that performance!
— Laura M // Texas Heritage Foundation House Concert, Johnson City TX
 Hot Pickin: bluegrass and country band