to 9:00 PM
Marshall Ford Swing Band
4 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Marshall Ford Swing Band
event::about The living room clock of Marshall Ford Swing Band songwriter-guitarist Greg Harkins has the 3 and 9 switched. The clock runs counter-clockwise, but Harkins sees no problem with it. In fact, the clock's irregularity perfectly fits into the makeup of the Austin swing band's aesthetic. 'We're heading into the past, man,' Harkins says with a smirk. Harkins and his band mates have been evoking that past since 2008. They pride themselves on playing Western swing music the way the legendary Johnny Gimble - MFSB singer-pianist Emily Gimble's grandfather - plays, the way Bob Wills and Hank Thompson used to when they ruled the Texas scene. They're unique in their modern execution of the antiquated art. 'It's fun to play,' Harkins says of Texas swing music. 'It's got hip changes. You can't help but tap your feet and snap your fingers to it.' Named for the predecessor of Lake Travis' Mansfield Dam, the band's roots were planted in 2003 by Harkins. Raised on Willie Nelson's 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow' and Bob Wills' 'For the Last Time,' the band's interest in swing music took them to Johnny Gimble's swing camp in Taos, N.M., where they met Emily and knew they had to start playing with her regularly. 'Emily Gimble ... sings with an amazing, free, effortless style. She sounds a little bit like Norah Jones and Billie Holliday, but it's not as mannered or stuffy as other female singers ... What I like about Emily is that she is totally unaffected, and the music just pours out of her, like it floats up out of her body, like an essential part of her.' - Elana James, Hot Club of Cowtown They persuaded Emily to move from Waco to Austin and brought in bassist Kristopher Wade and drummer James Gwyn to complete the quartet. Since then, it's been delighting fans with its upbeat swing and guitar magic in Austin and beyond. The band often plays with different pairings depending on the gig. Fans of the Marshall Ford Swing Band will get a heavy dose of Emily's sultry vocals, Greg's playful guitar phrasings, and Kris and James' tight rhythm section on this year's IT'S ABOUT DAM TIME, the band's first full-length studio album. Recorded at Austin's famed Tequila Mockingbird Studios and produced by Danny Levin, the album showcases the band's healthy dose of original tracks - each member contributed at least one song - along with some of Western swing's most beloved standards. Altogether, the album proves to be a welcome introduction to members of Marshall Ford Swing Band, modern day carriers of western swing's torch. 'A lot of people I know will play swing music,' says Emily, 'but it's not the same as with these guys. We pull off Western swing very well. It's special.'
to 10:00 PM
Jimmie Dale Gilmore & The Wronglers
55 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
event::about The Wronglers with Jimmie Dale Gilmore and their CD "Heirloom Music" The Wronglers (Warren Hellman (banjo/vocals), Nate Levine (guitar), Bill (mandolin) & Krista Martin (fiddle), Heidi Clare (fiddle/vocals) and Colleen Browne (bass/vocals)) is an old-time band, born at Hardly Strictly Bluegrass 2006. Over the years they have played around the Bay Area, opening for the likes of Steve Earle and Gillian Welch, as well as nationally at festivals such as South by Southwest, Old Settler's Festival, Strawberry Festival and The Folk Alliance Conference in Memphis. Jimmie Dale Gilmore of Lubbock, TX released his first album of many in 1988 and his heartfelt singing style, with its masterfully understated phrasing, is known in some circles as 'sagebrush soul,' a genre that he is credited with creating. And, in addition to his long, distinguished solo career, with its three Grammy nominations, Gilmore is a longtime member of The Flatlanders which also features fellow Lubbock-ites Joe Ely and Butch Hancock. For some time Gilmore has been wanting to go back to a time before country music got really commercialized and he saw his opportunity with The Wronglers. Hellman, better known as the benefactor of Hardly Strictly Bluegrass, got to know Gilmore through HSB and they have joined forces to make 'Heirloom Music' which will be out this Spring.
to 11:00 PM
Warren Hood and The Goods
12 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
event::about Warren Hood is an accomplished musician who plays violin, fiddle, mandolin, and composes and sings as well. He lives in Austin, Texas and performs with his local band, Warren Hood and the Hoodlums, in a blend of jazz/blues/newgrass acoustic fusion of music, on Sundays @ Momo's. In the 2005 Austin Chronicle Best Musician Awards, Warren was voted #1-Best String Player and his band was voted 2nd in the bluegrass category, by the Austin readers of this entertainment weekly. Warren is the fiddler for the Waybacks, a San Francisco based acoustic/Americana "all-terrain" band that tours regularly around the country and is fast gaining notoriety. Click here for their touring schedule to see if they are playing a gig soon near you. Click here to visit their MySpace website - where you can download and listen to songs from live shows and their latest album. Warren began playing fiddle at age 11 and studied classical violin for a number of years. At age 17 he won the Austin Youth Award and performed as soloist with the Austin Symphony. Later he honed his playing and singer/composition abilities with his former bands such as: Warren Hood & his Allstar Band, Blue Light Special and the South Austin Jug Band. Warren graduated from Berklee School of Music, excelling @ his craft, where he prior to graduation won the "String Achievement Award" - Berklee's highest honor, as selected by the faculty. The award is for those students "who as leaders in their field, will make a mark on the future of music." Warren's musical influences range from Ray Charles, Stephane Grapelli, Walter Hyatt and Uncle Walt's Band to his dad, Champ Hood. If you listen to Warren's compositions, the soulful then gypsyesque "Black Cat" instrumental on his 2008 self released CD - "Warren Hood" (Good Dinner Music), you will truly experience the talent of this instrumentalist. Also, if you enjoy the style of Uncle Walt's Band ballads, Warren's composition and vocal on his songs "Savannah" or "World Revolves" are quite, simply-remarkable.
to 12:00 AM
19 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Hazel Dickens
event::about From the coalfields of West Virginia to the factories of Baltimore, Hazel Dickens has lived the songs she sings. A pioneering woman in Bluegrass and Folk music, Hazel has influenced generations of songwriters and musicians. Her songs of hard work, hard times, and hardy souls have bolstered working people at picket lines and union rallies throughout the land. Hazel Dickens is also the original inspiration for the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival, the annual free festival held each October in Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. Over the past 10 years, it has grown into one of the world's largest and most anticipated festivals for concert goers and musicians alike. Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival Talent Buyer Dawn Holliday will be accepting submissions for the 2011 Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival during this week's SXSW on Wednesday, March 16 in the Victorian Room at Austin's Driskill Hotel. Submissions of an artist bio and CD will be accepted between 8:30 p.m. and 9 p.m. Holliday will also be available to discuss submissions between 10 p.m. & 11 p.m. with interested parties.
to 1:00 AM
8 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
event::about Austin progressive alt.-folk acoustic string band MilkDrive features award-winning musicians — Noah Jeffries on guitar, Dennis Ludiker on mandolin, Brian Beken on fiddle, Matt Mefford on upright bass — but awards reveal nothing about the quartet’ soul. MILKDRIVE LIVE ’09 captures the band’s rhythm and tempo mix and “impeccable” arrangements.
to 2:00 AM
to 9:00 PM
26 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
event::about ZUMdAR sees you! Peek-a-boo! Reptar is a band from Athens, GA. We play music that has been likened to space chasm electro dance zone. It makes you want to cummm over to mommys house! There are 4 young gentlemen in the band who prefer to be refered to by the first letter of their last name: K, E, U, and of couse M. We have been playing music for about 1 and a half years. We are working with producer Ben H. Allen (Animal Collective,Gnarls Barkley, Deerhunter, Cut Copy) who produced our first single and our upcoming EP. Reptar is working on a full length album set to come out in the summertime. Get ready to have fun wit your friends. Come be our friend!
to 10:00 PM
to 11:00 PM
1 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Slam Donahue
event::about Slam Donahue are a pop band based out of Brooklyn, NY. The members are David Otto (vocals/guitar), Thomas Sommerville (bass/vocals), and Keenan Mitchell (drums). They write straight-forward pop songs that will stick in your head long after your legs are tired from dancing along. They released dozens of home demos to their friends' hard drives before the Beggars Group got behind their debut single "Where Were We On The Weekend," dropping on Too Pure Singles Club in the UK this April along with "It's Scary." They can't wait to play their first SXSW showcase this year (Cantora Records); expect major moves in 2011.
to 12:00 AM
22 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
event::about Superhumanoids make dreamy pop that shouts summery '60s harmonies, garage rock's raw tonality, slick new-wave electronics, and the adventurous dissonance of '90s indie rock. Originally a solo bedroom project, the LA band quickly evolved into a multifaceted foursome equally focused on propulsive live performances and glimmery productions for private listening. Superhumanoids' 2008 demos were passed around by pals to friends of pals, leading to remix work for an array of artists including The Wombats, Zebra & Snake, Xiu Xiu, and Local Natives. Superhumanoids' formal debut, Urgency, was released in 2010 by Hit City USA (US) and Oh! Inverted World (UK) to acclaim from The Fader, LA Weekly, and The Guardian. The EP, available on 12" vinyl and digital download, was produced and recorded by Superhumanoids and highlights the crew's penchant for organic textures, electronic flourishes, and charming male/female vocal interplay.
to 1:00 AM
94 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Bear Hands
event::about "Burning Bush Supper Club is ….. one that sharpens the lush, hedonistic surrealism of reverb-laden psych-rock into tightly focused anthems that are just anarchic enough as to be unpredictable." - Pitchfork
to 2:00 AM
to 8:30 PM
4 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Antonia Bennett
event::about The music, at the same time contemporary and timeless, gives wing to a unique voice – sultry, yet warm and familiar like a classic beauty dancing happily in her favorite party dress. This voice is slightly sassy, completely classy, part vixen. This voice belongs to Antonia Bennett. Antonia is a singer, who like her legendary father Tony, has always known how to make a tune her own. This past summer and fall, Antonia toured some of the best venues and events across Europe and the United States. From London’s Royal Albert Hall, iTunes Festival UK, Umbria Jazz Festival (Italy), Istanbul Turkey, Ontario Canada, Gibson Amphitheatre (Los Angeles) to name a few. With Antonia there is a fresh yet classic quality that leaves you feeling like you are being “let in on a secret.” And that secret is… Antonia is magnificent, a true star. Her bloodline notwithstanding, this fiery redhead is a deeply gifted singer, a songwriter with much to say, and a playfully sexy/charismatic icon-in-waiting. She effortlessly has a deep knowledge of the classics and at the same time is working in collaboration with famed songwriter/producer Holly Knight. All supporting the Mesa Blue Moon / Fontana / Universal Music release of her Jazz EP, which includes such songs as “Soon,” “Putting On The Ritz,” “The Thrill Is Gone,” “I Fall To Pieces, “I Wish I Were In Love Again,” and “Love Is A Battlefield.” The EP is Produced by Holly Knight and features Piano and Arrangement by Grammy Nominated Larry Goldings (James Taylor, Al Jarreau, Norah Jones, John Mayer, David Sanbourne) Many people make the natural assumption that Antonia is only a Jazz or Standards artist, but to the contrary, she is heading into the Pop and Hot A/C market with a passion. Antonia’s forthcoming debut record marks her transition from classically trained singer to world-class Pop Vocalist, lyricist and composer. “I had a lot to say lyrically, and with Holly it became an effortless, whimsical process.” “We all want music that really grabs us and is meaningful,” muses Antonia, obviously excited about this soon to come strong, radio-friendly direction. “I have opened up in a big way. This upcoming album contains an empowering message for for both men and women.” Obviously Antonia is a woman of very strong convictions and an artist who’s come into her own. Contrary to popular assumption, there was no silver spoon in sight, and there were many years of hard work and paying dues. Not only is she naturally gifted, she knows the value of experience and education. She an alumni of Boston’s esteemed Berklee College of Music and has worked just about every type of musical gig on the way up. This summer Antonia is the opening act on Tony Bennett’s European tour and of course entertain audiences around the world.
to 9:15 PM
7 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Andrew Allen
event::about ANDREW ALLEN Spend a bit of time with Andrew Allen and it quickly becomes clear why this singer, songwriter, and musician has already become a successful recording artist in his native Canada: sheer force of will. Outgoing and good-natured, with a quick, comic wit, Allen is a hurtling ball of positive energy — he just doesn’t hear the word “no.” Exhibit A: When he found himself broke after his band imploded, he and his wife, contacted Carnival Cruise lines, told them they had lots of emcee experience (which they didn’t), and landed a year-long gig as social hosts on the ship. (More on that later.) Exhibit B: When a booking agent told Allen he couldn’t possibly tour full time and still book his own shows, Allen’s reaction was: “Actually, I think I can.” The couple sold their house, bought a minvan, and set off on tour across Canada that lasted two months. All the while, Allen planned a UK tour by searching for venues on UKPubFinder.com and emailing the proprietors to ask if he could come perform. Their response? “Sure, why not?” Allen’s DIY ability and optimistic attitude have served him well. He has scored two Top 10 hits in Canada, 2009’s “I Wanna Be Your Christmas” and his current single “Loving You Tonight,” which has been lodged in the upper reaches of the singles chart for 10 weeks and counting. A lilting, sunny tune about an ideal romance, “Loving You Tonight” got Allen noticed by Epic Records, which signed him to a recording contract in December 2010 and will release his debut album in 2011. Though Allen is still in the studio writing and recording with producer Ryan Stewart (who has worked with a host of Canada’s top singer-songwriters), the album is shaping up to be a stellar collection of upbeat songs that showcase the sweet clarity of Allen’s voice, as well as his impeccable ear for pop melody and fondness for beachy, acoustic grooves — an influence Allen attributes partly to his time working on the cruise ship. “We traveled to the Caribbean islands and I became very enamored with the spirit of the music,” Allen says. “They’d have Caribbean bands performing on deck, and sometimes I’d jump onstage with them and do a couple songs to get a feel for their vibe. Allen also points out that all of Canada, is not actually an endless frozen tundra-like landscape. In fact, British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley where Allen grew up is known for its California-esque climate. “My town, Vernon, is surrounded by lakes,” he says. “It’s kind of known as the Canadian desert. The mountains and hills dry out in the summer because it’s so hot, and these tan-colored hills flow into the beautiful, purplish-blue lakes. It’s very relaxed there, and I think that has definitely influenced the feel of some of my songs, like ‘7 Days,’ and ‘Sooner.’” Allen began taking piano lessons at the age of five. “I can still picture myself sitting at the piano with these big Coke-bottle glasses and a vest that was sewn onto my shirt so I wouldn’t lose it,” he says, shaking his head and chuckling. “I was that quintessential nerdy kid.” Allen came up through Canada’s Royal Conservatory School, but preferred to play his own compositions, which he began writing at age 10. He also took up the saxophone, after his parents rejected his request for a drum kit, and joined the choir, even though his friends called it social suicide. “Glee did not exist then,” he says with a laugh, “but I absolutely loved it.” Recognizing his natural talent, one of the school’s music teachers steered Allen toward the drums, and also introduced him to bass and trombone. “He just kept throwing different instruments at me to keep me challenged,” Allen recalls. At age 15, Allen bought a guitar and formed his first band. “We were called Liable Cause,” he says. “I don’t even know what that means.” The experience playing to crowds during his Carnival Cruise ship days would come in handy when Allen eventually set out on a tour across Canada in 2008 in support of an album he had recorded entitled The Living Room Sessions. “The album was about life, love, and connecting with people, so we made good on that by saying, ‘If you want me to come play in your living room, I totally will. All you’ve got to do is guarantee there will be between 40 and 60 people there, let us crash at your house and maybe you’ll make us dinner.’” In this way, Allen was able to build a sizeable grassroots following, ensuring that his shows were packed the next time he came through town. “At our first showcase in Toronto, these label guys were like, ‘Why are there people here? And why do they range in age from 18 to 80?’ Allen recalls with a laugh. “And it was because people invited their friends, their grandparents, everyone they knew. And those people were like, ‘We’ll support that guy. He’s nice. He played in my sister’s living room.’” Thanks to The Living Room Sessions, Allen was able to stay out on the road for two years straight. Which brings us to 2010. Last June, Allen released “Loving You Tonight,” which eventually got added to every single AC Anglophone station in Canada. He hit the road from June through August, taking only four days off, and signed with Epic Records at the end of the year. Now he’s looking forward to launching his career Stateside, a winter 2011 tour with Joshua Radin, and the release of his major-label debut album. “I was always the kind of person who, if I’d step into a house and it had a piano, I’d play it,” Allen says. “If I had a guitar with me, I’d play it. And if there were people around to listen, I’d love it even more. I’d grab a guitar and go busk on the street because I wanted people to hear it. Now it’s just turned into more people wanting to listen. It’s grown organically. I’ve never had to think very hard about making music, it just comes naturally to me. But the best part is seeing how it connects with people. I’ve already seen the effect it can have, so I can’t wait to see what kind of effect I can have at the next level — to see how lives can be changed in a positive way.”
to 10:00 PM
32 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Dan Wilson
event::about Dan Wilson is a singer, multi-instrumentalist, and Grammy-winning songwriter. Over more than two decades, he has built a reputation as a writer of songs of uncompromising beauty and timeless artistry: a “songwriter’s songwriter” whose music has nonetheless many times graced the top of the popular charts. A member of the beloved and influential alternative band Trip Shakespeare in the late 80’s and early ‘90s, Wilson relentlessly toured the indie rock circuit with the group. Wilson’s next band, Semisonic, was formed when Trip Shakespeare announced an open-ended hiatus from performing. Semisonic’s second album, “Feeling Strangely Fine,” sold over 2 million copies worldwide and remains a touchstone of late-90’s alternative rock. “Closing Time” and “Secret Smile,” the band’s biggest hits, are familiar and recurrent radio presences in many countries. In 2007, Wilson released his first solo CD, “Free Life,” on Rick Rubin’s American Recordings label. Created in a series of loosely organized Mineapolis recording sessions, the album is a glorious hybrid of Wilson’s classic, personal acoustic songs and Rubin’s spare, naked-yet-sparkling rock production style. As a recording artist, songwriter and producer, Wilson has worked with some of the most celebrated figures in rock and pop music, artists of widely diverse styles and sounds: The Dixie Chicks (with whom he shared 2007′s Song of the Year Grammy for “Not Ready to Make Nice,”) Sheryl Crow, Mike Doughty (whose albums “Haughty Melodic” and “Golden Delicious” Wilson also produced), Jason Mraz, Rick Rubin, Carole King, Keith Urban, Josh Groban, KT Tunstall, Rivers Cuomo, Rachael Yamagata, Jewel, Adele, James Morrison, and Katy Perry, among many others. He is currently working on his second solo album in Los Angeles.
to 10:45 PM
The Civil Wars
161 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists The Civil Wars
event::about THE CIVIL WARS Barton Hollow by Chris Willman In some ways, music doesn’t get much more modest or minimalist than it is in the hands of The Civil Wars, a duo comprised of California-to-Nashville transplant Joy Williams and her Alabaman partner, John Paul White. They travel without a backup band, and on their first full-length album, Barton Hollow, the bare-bones live arrangements that fans hear on the road are fleshed out with just the barest of acoustic accoutrements. Each song is an intimate conversation, and no third wheels or dinner-party chatter are going to interrupt that gorgeous, haunting hush. On the other hand, there’s been something distinctly loud about the duo’s introduction to the world, even prior to the album’s release. Their signature song “Poison & Wine” was heard on Grey’s Anatomy—in the foreground, in its entirety, over a key climactic montage, prompting hundreds of thousands of viewers to Google the mystery music. And they got a wholly unsolicited endorsement when America’s biggest pop star gave The Civil Wars a seal of approval. After first tweeting her love for the duo, fellow Nashvillian Taylor Swift included “Poison & Wine” as a selection in her official iTunes playlist, saying, “I think this is my favorite duet. It’s exquisite.” Swift took the words right out of the folk-country-Americana world’s mouth. If it looks like The Civil Wars’ appeal might cast a net that extends well beyond the typical audience for acoustically based music, that may be due to the inherent sensibilities Williams and White bring to their collaboration, which are quite disparate, if not necessarily warring. Both were gigging and recording on their own prior to teaming up a year and a half ago, neither solo career quite suggesting what their conjoined sound would turn out to be. “I do naturally bend pop,” says Williams, who adds that she “grew up on Billie Holliday and The Beach Boys.” White, meanwhile, was raised on Kristofferson, Cash, and Townes Van Zandt by his retro-country-favoring dad. “Somehow we’re pulling from each other what we crave and what our strengths are,” he says. If the music ultimately leans more toward White’s native South than Williams’ northern Cali roots, he says, “I think Joy’s got some hillbillies in her ancestry or something like that. There’s a song on our record called ‘My Father’s Father’ that we wrote on the day of the inauguration down in Muscle Shoals, not long after we got together. I started playing the guitar figure and she starting singing this amazing Appalachian kind of melody, and I’m like, ‘Don’t even pretend that you’re the pop girl and you come out with shit like that!’ I don’t know where this stuff is coming from, but she’s drawing it from somewhere, and it’s amazing.” “Poison & Wine” isn’t just The Civil Wars’ breakout song. It’s also a thematic declaration of intent for this utterly complementary odd couple, encapsulating everything suggested in the duo’s name when it comes to exploring the conflicts that arise as part of couplehood. Speaking of which: They aren’t, that—a couple, that is. But they’re far from insulted if you mistake them for An Item in the storied tradition of the Swell Season, Richard and Linda Thompson, or other famous duos whose on-again, off-again relationships offstage complicated their stage relations. “A lot of people think that we’re married, and I think that’s actually quite flattering, to be honest,” says White. “Because we don’t want people to think that we’re up here acting and feigning the emotions that we write and sing about and show on stage. But one of the things that really make this special in our eyes is that if she and I were in a relationship together, it'd be a totally different act. We would write totally different songs. I don’t think we would be able to go on stage every night and sing ‘I don’t love you.’ I don’t think a healthy relationship could withstand that every single night. There’s areas we can delve into that wouldn’t make sense for somebody that’s till-death-do-us-part. I think there’s also a tension there that wouldn’t be there if it was something that was just rote, something that was an everyday relationship. We try to use that to our advantage.” “Poison & Wine” fits the paradigm of subject matter too true to be spoken, as opposed to sung. “That song probably does sum us up—The Civil Wars, the name of the band—as well as any song that we’ve written,” White says. It’s the one song on the album written with an outside collaborator, their friend Chris Lindsey. “We’re all married, and we were all talking about the good, the bad and the ugly, and just felt like: What would you say to someone if you were actually brutally honest—the things that you could never say because it would turn them away or let the cat out of the bag or reveal yourself to be weaker? What would you actually say if you had this invisible curtain around you and could just scream it in somebody’s face and they’d actually never hear it? We were all being very painfully honest, because we’re all very comfortable around each other and know that things like that never leave the room, except in a song. I’m pretty proud of that song, to be honest.” When “Poison & Wine” was heard in its entirety on Grey’s Anatomy—versus in the background, for a few seconds, as Williams and White had expected—they knew that if the show’s audience liked what they heard, it would put their search skills to the test. The title only pops up in a verse, not the chorus, so it involved some ingenuity or intuition to track the tune down. Fortunately, viewers proved up to the test of finding, and choosing, their “Poison.” At last count, the song’s official YouTube video had been viewed 400,000 times. White and Williams met in 2008 on what he describes as a “blind date, getting stuck in a room together, not knowing anything about each other.” This was a strictly professional blind date. As Williams recalls, “I got a call for what’s called a writing camp, where several writers were called together to work on trying to write several radio singles for a particular country band. Though I live in Nashville, I worked mostly in L.A. and came more out of the pop world, so I was like, why did they call me? John Paul definitely wasn’t bringing a Music Row sensibility in when he was coming into the write, either, but neither of us knew that about each other. In that room, it was almost 20 writers, basically drawing straws and getting to know each other a little bit. And when he started singing, I somehow knew where he was heading musically and could follow him, without ever having met him before. And that had never happened to me.” “I’ve done lots of co-writes and collaborative situations, but I’d never felt that weird spark,” agrees White—“that weird familiarity like we’d been in a family band or something most of our lives. The beautiful part of it was that neither one of us would let on, so we both played it cool for a while, saying ‘That went well, we should write another,” and so on. I worked up enough nerve to—so to speak—ask her out. But there was a lot of scuffing my heel on the floor and ‘I don’t know what you’re doing for a while, but I’ve got this guitar, and you sing pretty good, but you probably don’t want to. You’re so much better than I am. Never mind. I’m just gonna go.’ Luckily she felt the same way.” Months later, they did their first show as The Civil Wars at the French Quarter Café in Nashville—where their future producer, Charlie Peacock, was in attendance and definitely taking notice. Their second show was at a club called Eddie’s Attic in Decatur, Georgia, and it was attended by roughly 100,000 fans. At least, that’s how many people have downloaded Live at Eddie’s Attic, a free digital album, from their website. The set included eight originals plus a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Dance Me to the End of Love.” “We didn’t even rehearse that much for t…
to 11:30 PM
Hotels and Highways
9 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Hotels and Highways
event::about At a crucial moment of quiet intensity, the members of Hotels & Highways heard the wind rustling the trees in their headphones. For any other project it would have been an unwelcome signal to cut the take short and try again when there was golden silence. Instead, the three newly-committed band members smiled at their good fortune and carried on playing, the wind and trees now indelible partners in the song’s performance. It was September 2010 and Erin "Syd" Sidney, Lisa Piccirillo and Patrick Thomas were getting to be well-versed in letting their temporary home in the woods be a part of the creative process. They’d come to a lakeside cabin in New York to fulfill a mutual, career-long dream of living together while recording an album. A week-long tour of the Northeast had been booked immediately following the 10-day writing and recording retreat. The material was largely unwritten. The sound had not been clearly defined. But with each day’s new songs and each night’s recording sessions, what began as a joyful experiment in creativity and trust evolved quickly into an emerging full-length album and a well-received tour. Hotels & Highways, originally a nom de plume for songs a group of friends wrote together, had quietly and gracefully transformed into a band. With a stream of updates and videos coming from the cabin, friends and fans watched the project gather momentum and became an integral part of the experience. Real-time support for the group evolved into validation that only a proper release would do this music justice. Through the use of fan-funding website Kickstarter, the band raised over $13,000 (far surpassing their goal of $10,000) to finance the remaining production on their album and a corresponding national tour. With this massive vote of confidence from their fan base, Hotels & Highways' cabin-grown debut, "Lost River," hits digital stands on March 8, 2011. Syd, Patrick, and Lisa are each experienced touring and recording artists with self-released albums and a thick portfolio of singer/songwriter accolades. Each has performed showcases at prestigious music festivals, opened for national acts, maintained rigorous touring schedules and received plenty of quotable love from the press. Though comprised of accomplished members, Hotels & Highways is just beginning its journey. Leaving behind the sounds of that lake in New York, the band will share the spirit that defines them and live up to their name with a 6-week tour of the US, including dates at Cafe 939 in Boston, Rockwood Music Hall's new Stage 2 in New York City, Molly Malone's in Los Angeles, a showcase at South by Southwest and 20 other major cities in the Spring of 2011.
to 12:15 AM
to 1:00 AM
36 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Crystal Bowersox
event::about Crystal Bowersox will release her debut album, Farmer’s Daughter (19 Recordings/Jive Records) on December 14th. The 2010 American Idol runner-up’s set includes her original song, “Holy Toledo,” a song she performed on the show as well as the arresting title track which chronicles her personal experience of dealing with child abuse. Fans and Idol viewers know Crystal is a talented singer, but Farmer’s Daughter further establishes her as a truly gifted songwriter. Farmer's Daughter was produced by David Bendeth (Paramore, Breaking Benjamin, Papa Roach). After finishing up the 2010 American Idol Live Tour, Bowersox headed to New Jersey to begin production on her eagerly awaited debut. The twelve tracks, ten of them written or co-written by Bowersox, showcase her strong songwriting skills and her desire to infuse her lyrics with that raw emotion of someone who has lived. The album also contains 8 songs written solely by Crystal, 2 co-writes, an additional track by Kara Dioguardi and Nickelback’s Chad Kroeger titled “Hold On” and a cover of Buffalo Springfield’s 1967 classic “For What It’s Worth.” One very special song is “Mason,” a song Bowersox co-wrote with her husband Brian Walker, which they performed together at their recent nuptials. Farmer’s Daughter Tracklisting: 1. Ridin With The Radio 2. For What It’s Worth 3. Farmer’s Daughter 4. Holy Toledo 5. Lonely 6. Hold On 7. On The Run 8. Kiss Ya 9. Speak Now 10. Mine All Mine 11. Mason 12. Arlene Born and raised in rural northwest Ohio, Bowersox began her musical journey at the age of 10. She performed her original songs around town in local bars, festivals and charity functions. At 17, she moved to Chicago, IL, performing in venues ranging from subway platforms to the House Of Blues. In 2006, the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs chose Crystal to represent Chicago folk music in “Experience Chicago,” in Birmingham, England, as part of their Sister Cities program. In 2007, Crystal went on a month-long, independent Small Cafe tour, including Ankara, Istanbul and Oaxaca, Mexico. After becoming a single mother in 2009, Bowersox successfully tried out for American Idol and went on to place second.
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3 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
event::about Storyhill is a folk duo that brings infectious melodies, smart story songs and heartbreaking harmonies together in one perfect package. Chris Cunningham and John Hermanson grew up and started performing together as teenagers, while living in Bozeman, Montana. Now, with the release of their new album Shade of the Trees, Storyhill confirms that they are one of the most important songwriting duos today. Mixing old-fashioned storytelling with hauntingly spare acoustic arrangements, they sing about love, war and the many sorrows that accompany them. "Storyhill...setting a new high standard for male duet harmony" -Garrison Keillor
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4 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Carrie Elkin
event::about With the vocal fire of Patty Griffin and the lyrical rawness of Rickie Lee Jones, Carrie Elkin's songs are, at once, intimate yet universal, naked yet richly adorned. Maverick Magazine says it best exuberantly stating,"I have never seen a performer so in love with the act of singing. That's the gospel truth....onstage, Elkin was simply a force of nature." Carrie's latest record, "Call it My Garden" was released on Red House Records in January 2011. The record was a New & Noteworthy pick on itunes and had a number one song on the Folk DJ charts.
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17 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Eliza Gilkyson
event::about Eliza Gilkyson is a politically minded, poetically gifted singer-songwriter, who has become one of the most respected musicians in roots, folk and Americana circles. The Grammy-nominated artist has appeared on NPR, Austin City Limits, Mountain Stage, etown, XM, Air America Radio and has toured with Richard Thompson, Patty Griffin and Mary Chapin Carpenter. In February of 2003, she was inducted into the Austin Music Hall of Fame. The induction placed Eliza alongside an exclusive list of Austin Music Hall of Fame greats, including Willie Nelson, Townes Van Zandt, Nanci Griffith, Billy Joe Shaver, Butch Hancock, Joe Ely and others. In 2006, she was recognized with 3 Austin Music Awards and 4 Folk Alliance Music Awards, one of which was for 'Song of the Year' for her tune 'Man of God.' Eliza's meditative tune 'Requiem,' written as a prayer for those who lost lives in the devastating tsunami in Southeast Asia, was recorded by the nationally recognized choral group Conspirare and was nominated for a Grammy. It was also featured on NPR's All Things Considered. Her album Beautiful World was called 'one of the best folk albums of 2008' by the Utne Reader, and her 2010 project with Lucy Kaplansky and John Gorka called Red Horse charted on Billboard and was one of the most played folk albums of the year. Now, Eliza Gilkyson releases her highly anticipated new solo album called Roses at the End of Time, available on Red House Records.
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Hurray for the Riff Raff
19 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Hurray for the Riff Raff
event::about Hurray for the Riff Raff began when Alynda lee Segarra started hopping trains across the USA at age 17. She eventually settled in New Orleans and was quickly embraced by the city's large community of street musicians. After years of learning from the music of the city she loves, Alynda began recording and performing under the name Hurray for the Riff Raff. Influenced by the sounds of Classic Country, 1960's Rock 'n' Roll, and master songwriters like Townes Van Zandt and Neil Young, Hurray for the Riff Raff has deep roots in the landscape of America. After two self-released albums (2007's It Don't Mean I Don't Love You and 2010's Young Blood Blues), the band will be releasing a self-titled CD comprised of the best songs from those records on Loose Music (Felice Brothers, M Ward, Neko Case) in Europe on March 21, 2011.
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13 schedule::attendeesLocation Victorian Room at The Driskill
Artists Ruby Jane
event::about Ruby Jane Biography: 16-year-old Ruby Jane is the real deal. Born in Dallas, TX, she is a fiddler, singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist bandleader of “The Ruby Jane Show” showcasing her distinctive Americana mix of country, jazz, bluegrass, and blues. With deep familial and cultural ties to Mississippi where she lived for her first 12 years, she now resides in Austin, TX. Ruby Jane exhibited a strong connection to music early, and began classical violin instruction at the surprising age of two-years-old. At age eight, Ruby shifted her focus from classical to old-time and bluegrass music. After only six fiddle lessons, she won first place in the first fiddle competition she entered at the McFarland Mall in Tuscaloosa, AL, beginning a run of victories and increasing notoriety as a fiddle prodigy. Ruby was granted an apprenticeship by the Mississippi Arts Commission to study under Charles T. Smith, one of Mississippi’s last great old-time fiddlers. This began a period where Ruby would compete in dozens of prestigious music competitions and perform with many bluegrass greats, including Marty Stuart, Rhonda Vincent (“The Queen of Bluegrass”), Jesse McReynolds, Jim Brock, James Monroe, Carl Jackson and many others, with Jim Brock becoming her personal teacher. In 2005, Ruby Jane became the youngest invited fiddler in history to play the Grand Ole Opry, sharing the stage with Opry legend Mike Snider at the tender age of 10. Meanwhile the accolades and awards continued to pour in, with Ruby ranking first nationally for kids under twelve in the National Beginners Fiddle Championship, and Second Place on the mandolin in the National Beginner Country Musician Competition. She was also crowned the Mississippi State Fiddle Champion of 2005 for all age groups; the youngest such state champion in the competition’s history. Media outlets began to pick up on the Ruby Jane phenomenon, and in 2006 a feature story aired on the CBS Evening News about the then 12-year-old fiddle prodigy. Features also ran in The Christian Science Monitor, W magazine, British Vogue, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and award-winning publications in Russia and Australia. She also recorded her first full-length album eponymously-named “Ruby Jane” and selections were played on bluegrass radio in the United States, Canada, and the Australia. When asked what to identify the highlight of 2006, Ruby mentioned playing on stage with Marty Stuart at “Marty’s Late Night Jam at the Ryman.” In 2007, she won a prestigious American String Teachers Association ” Alternative Styles Award” while continuing to tour and write original music. In April, Ruby recorded Creekside with Steve Fishell as producer. Ruby played for her biggest crowd ever at the CMA Music Fest in Nashville when Big & Rich invited her on stage in front of a crowd of more than 60,000 for ABC’s July 23rd primetime special, “CMA Music Festival: Country Music’s Night to Rock.” On July 27, 2007 she received an extraordinary honor in music: the Daniel Pearl Memorial Violin at the Mark O’Connor Strings Conference in San Diego, CA. The violin is named for the Wall Street Journal reporter who was murdered in Pakistan in 2002. Daniel was also a violin and fiddle player. Ruby Jane made a move to Austin in September of 2007, and began sitting in with Texas greats like Johnny Gimble, Dale Watson, Jim Stringer, and Bob Schneider, Bill Carter, Freddy Powers, and Will Sexton. Ruby joined Dale Watson on stage at Austin’s historic Continental Club her first night in town. Ray Benson of Asleep At The Wheel discovered Ruby while looking for a young fiddle player for his play “A Ride With Bob.” Ruby joined the cast in early 2008, and through Ray met her childhood hero Willie Nelson during the production of the album Willie and the Wheel, of which Ruby appears on the bonus track. This led to Ruby touring nationally with both Asleep At The Wheel and Willie Nelson in his “Family Band,” and appearing on the Willie and the Wheel performance on Austin City Limits. Ruby also shared the stage with Lyle Lovett, Willie, and Asleep at the Wheel at the grand opening of the Long Center of the Performing Arts in Austin, that becomes the new home of Austin City Limits in 2011. Ruby’s acting in “A Ride With Bob” inspired her to take acting lessons, and she spent a summer in Los Angeles working with noted producer Zalman King on a TV Pilot for a show called “Swinghouse.” Ruby Jane’s primary focus now is her own band, entitled “The Ruby Jane Show.” In early 2010 they released Live at Roadhouse Rags, including 9 original songs that highlight Ruby’s prowess as a bandleader. 2010 was busy for Ruby, as she toured France in August with Freddy Powers and the band “Stop The Truck” and then in September at 2010′s ACL Fest, she sat in with Blues Traveler, and then drew over 2,000 people for The Ruby Jane Show Sunday morning performance, being named “MVP of ACL Fest” by the Austin Chronicle. Ruby Jane continues to write songs, improve in technique, and mature in style. She can be found making music in and around Austin, whether sitting in with bands and performers from across the musical spectrum, or leading The Ruby Jane Show. She is warming hearts, embracing audiences, and making everyone wonder just where she is bound.