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St. Paul and the Broken Bones formed about a year ago after a studio session with six other Birmingham musicians (including a three-piece brass section). Word of Janeway’s charisma and the band’s old-school soul chops spread fast—and far. Their sold-out shows have won praise from Paste magazine and National Public Radio music critics. After snagging a showcase at Austin’s South by Southwest (SXSW) music conference, the buzz about St. Paul and the Broken Bones has continued apace; they’ve been frequently hailed as the next hot thing after the Alabama Shakes, a rootsy five-piece band from Athens, Alabama, whose star has shone brightly in the past year. (The Shakes’ keyboard player Ben Tanner produced St. Paul and the Broken Bones’ debut album, out this spring.)
Surprisingly, Janeway kept up a full-time schedule of classes through last semester, combining it with a full-time job as a bank teller and rehearsals and performances with the band. Now he’s taking advantage of the UAB School of Business’s online accounting program, which began in 2012 and recently was ranked seventh in the nation—out of 852 programs—by the Open Education Database. Currently, he’s taking two courses online, working on completing his degree between gigs.