Teng to tell Steamboat of her ‘Waking Hour’ | SteamboatToday.com

Teng to tell Steamboat of her ‘Waking Hour’

Autumn Phillips

It was as if the music world was waiting at the gate. Vienna Teng only needed to flip the latch and let them in. But she was afraid.

She played music whenever she had spare time — mostly at coffeehouses. She played music and wrote songs as she got an engineering degree from Stanford University, and she kept playing music even as she took a job as a software engineer.

But a fan base was growing, she noticed, and her heart was not at her day job.

At 23, she quit her job to play music full time. The gate opened and offers started pouring in.

Months after resigning, she was playing her music on “The Late Show with David Letterman,” on NPR’s “Weekend Morning Edition” and on music guru David Dye’s “World Cafe.”

Teng signed with independent label, Virt Records, and is touring with her album “Waking Hour.”

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With the success rolling in faster than she can play a whispering introspective song, Teng wonders at why it took her so long to follow her music.

“I always wanted to do music,” she said, “but I definitely grew up in a family that expected me to get an advanced degree. I don’t know why I chose engineering. I guess I was stalling.”

Teng is based in San Francisco and tours in three-week stretches up the West Coast. This is her first national tour.

Teng will stop in Steamboat Springs on Sunday for a show at Mahogany Ridge.