In a town that bills itself as the "Live Music Capital of the World," Austin isn't short on musical talent.
But while most musicians can be heard belting out tunes from the city's countless stages, George Alistair Sanger has crafted his career writing music for video games from his North Austin studio — a makeshift musical laboratory of sorts equipped with everything from a circle of keyboards and prototype synthesizers to old tube radios and a collection of guitars too numerous to count.
"I wanted to be the big hot shot here in Austin — I was going to be The Fat Man of Austin, which is where the name came from," Sanger said. "In one way or the other, I was struggling the whole time. It never did get easy."
Despite that fact that Sanger has composed music or designed sound for more than 250 games — including "The 7th Guest," "Wing Commander" and "Zombies Ate My Neighbors" — he's familiar with the woes of self-employment.
"When you are self-employed, you never have the exact right amount of work," he said. "It's either too much or too little, and you are always worried about whether you will have something to eat or be able to fulfill your obligations."