Archives for January 2019

Acoustic Magic

Yes, this is the kind of magic your humble Austin Music Minute host thrives on, with all Austin-based talent in one evening of outstanding musical discovery. If you don’t know these names, get to know them when you catch their performances tonight at the Cactus Cafe, 2247 Guadalupe, in the Texas Union Building. This evening’s artists:

-Every great songwriter is often a damn good storyteller. Curtis McMurtry lives up to that standard and beyond. Following his solo debut with Respectable Enemy (2014), McMurtry crafted tales of everyday existence into exceptional, imaginative mind journeys on The Hornet’s Nest (2017). Extraordinary blends of folk and chamber orchestration bring it all to life.

Anna Roenigk is the mastermind behind the moniker Born Again Virgin. Though BAV’s music has been labeled alt.-rock, there’s far more brewing beneath the surface that completely steps outside of such a limited description. BAV’s self-titled debut EP (2017) is an excellent mix of dissonant and harmonic artistry ranging from lo-fi sounds to more complex arrangements. Expect more new tracks this year.

-Cellist and composer Diana Burgess, who frequently performs alongside McMurtry as well as Mother Falcon, is also co-founder, outreach director and cello teacher for Mother Falcon’s Music Lab. Burgess continues to collaborate with several artists in multiple music genres, but she’s currently working on her solo debut.

Doors open at 8 p.m., and the music starts at 8:30 p.m. Recommended.

Texas Standard: January 31, 2019

First the ranches, then the big cities. Come 2020, is the next great political battleground in the Lone Star State the suburbs? We’ll take a closer look. Also, senator John Cornyn now warning fellow Republicans that President Trump could lose Texas in 2020. Is the Lone Star State no longer reliably red? The answer might be found in the suburbs. And although the Permian basin’s booming, we might be on the road to a new foreign energy dependence, we’ll hear why. All that and a whole lot more today on the Texas Standard:

Altamesa: “Genuine Affection”

Way back in 2016, Austinite Evan Charles introduced the world to his project Altamesa and picked up critical attention for his debut full-length The Long Ride Home. One dusty trail later, Charles is far from riding off into the sunset and fronts what is now a cosmic Americana trio that includes The Happen-Ins frontman and Altamesa co-producer Sean Faires.

In 2017 Charles and Faires hit the studio with a fuller rock sound than Altamesa’s previous solo recordings, and next week we’ll get the fruits of their labor. The ten songs on the Idol Frontier LP are spacey, rustic, rugged and pleasant all at once, and pretty much achieve musical manifest destiny for Altamesa. You can hear Altamesa at 5pm next Wednesday at Waterloo Records, 3pm next Thursday live on KUTX, and at the release show next Friday at Cheer Up Charlies! Let’s un-hitch from the work week with one of Idol Frontier‘s finest, “Genuine Affection”!

Beerland Thursday Night

Your Austin Music Minute is ready for yet another Thursday night hot spot, all Austin bands and all awesome. Here’s what in store for you tomorrow night at Beerland, 711 1/2 Red River:

-Waking up on a Sunday morning for those trippy cartoons… It’s a bit of nostalgia rock with Housewarming.

-Maximum melodic guitar on board. We have Lift Off. Soak in the alt.- and Brit pop-inspired tunes by SPIRALS.

-Of course synths reign supreme on this trip. Maggie’s the synth kween, you know. Key-powered garage psych with Space Heat.

-Poppy goodness that morphs and mutilates into a crunch-rock frenzy. Bubble-grunge dream pop by The Hermits. Aww yisss.

Doors open at 9 p.m. Thursdays are the coolest. So recommended.

-Photo of Housewarming courtesy of the artist.

Texas Standard: January 30, 2019

People have been flocking to the Lone Star State for its economy, but is a good job the key to the good life in Texas? We’ll take a look at the unreported face of household hardship. One problem with the poverty line: what it fails to factor in. A new report shows more working Texans struggling with economic hardship than you might think. Also, a politifact check on the cost of illegal immigration. And it’s not just what you say but how you say it: an expert linguist decodes the Governor’s Texas twang. All that and so much more today on the Texas Standard:

Charlie Faye & The Fayettes: “Night People”

Half a century from its first golden age, Austin soul pop trio Charlie Faye & The Fayettes is bringing the ’60s “girl group” energy back to a new prime. With Akina Adderley and Betty Soo backing up the eponymous frontwoman, The Fayettes combine modern production and vintage pop, while appropriating the female vocalist aesthetic in a lyrically empowering way.

Next Friday Charlie Faye & The Fayettes share their sophomore album, The Whole Shebang, featuring twelve new originals from Faye that send retro sounds straight to the forefront. Charlie Faye & The Fayettes join us in Studio 1A next Thursday on Eklektikos and The Whole Shebang release show is Friday the 8th at the Continental Club. You’ve heard the lead single, “Don’t Need No Baby” on KUTX, so here’s another glimpse at these dozen new tunes: “Night People”!

This Song: Dana Falconberry (rerun)

February is “Love Austin Music Month” and to celebrate This Song is re-running this episode with singer and songwriter Dana Falconberry.  In it she talks to host Elizabeth McQueen about the profound impact that being in the band “Peter and the Wolf” had on her when she first moved to Austin. It’s two Austin musicians, talking how Austin Music changed their lives. Enjoy!

Listen to the episode of This Song


Subscribe via the Podcasts App, iTunes or Stitcher to get the new episodes of This Song delivered to you as soon as they come out.

Listen to Dana Falconberry’s new single “Who Will Be the Only One.”

Check out KUTX’s “Love Austin Music Month” page to find ways to support the Austin Music Scene

Listen to music by Peter & the Wolf


Rockets’ Glare

It’s been almost 30 years since the formation of St. Louis roots rock band Bottle Rockets. And there’s no denying they were an integral part of the rising wave of roots and alt.-country artists in the ‘90s. This is, of course, in addition to making waves of their own with social commentary that pulled no punches. Combine damn good folk and twang with gut-punching lyrics that show no mercy, and you have one hell of a perfect mix.

These days, the guys are touring in support of their latest release, Bit Logic, and it’s an absolute pleasure to hear front man Brian Henneman be as ornery as ever. But look past those initial curmudgeon impressions you might have. These are rants with all the wit, self-deprecating humor and antihero perspective a Bottle Rockets fan could hope for.

Catch Bottle Rockets tomorrow night at 3Ten at ACL Live, 310 Willie Nelson Blvd. Nashville-based artist Ryan Culwell opens the show. Doors at 7 p.m., music at 8 p.m.

-Photography by Cary Horton.

Texas Standard: January 29, 2019

The Texas voter fraud claim: 95 thousand registered voters may be non-citizens. But does the citizenship check violate federal law? We’ll take a look. Also, in Texas few things are more sacred than property rights, until they’re pitted against oil and gas interests. How a planned pipeline through the hill country could prove a test of Texas values. And more venture capital money flowing into the Lone Star State, reaching levels not seen since the dot com heyday. Happy days are here again? Why you might want to hold off on the party hats. Those stories and so much more today on the Texas Standard:

Pilotcan: “Daylight Savings Time”

If you remember Scottish post-rockers Pilotcan but feel like they haven’t been around for awhile, you’re not wrong. Well guess what? They’re back.

After fourteen long years this Edinburgh quartet has re-emerged with their familiar late ’90s sound, this time for a heartfelt tribute to the Live Music Capital. Mostly written here, recorded entirely across the pond, and inspired by the City of Austin and its residents, Pilotcan’s late 2018 album, Bats Fly Out From Under The Bridge is a knockout of alt-shoegaze post-rock. With another new record already in the can, Pilotcan promises more material in 2019 as well as a compilation of previously unreleased rarities.

For now let’s enjoy a treat from the tourists and Bats Fly Out From Under The Bridge, “Daylight Savings Time”!

Bobby Hutcherson

This past week commemorated the 77th anniversary of Bobby Hutcherson‘s birthday, the “world’s best vibist” who passed away in 2016.

In this edition of Liner Notes, Rabbi and jazz Historian Neil Blumofe guides us through the life, contributions and influence of Bobby Hutcherson.

Music: “Little Angel”, “Montara”, “Catta” – Bobby Hutcherson

“Groovin Blue” – Curtis Amy, “Blue Rondo” – Jackie Maclean,  “Naima” – San Francisco Jazz Collective

What The Moon Can Do

Put the sanguine lunar activity on pause for just a moment. Lolita Lynne bids you welcome to the heart-aching wax and wane of a Fools Moon.

It didn’t take long for this understated treasure, shimmering with Lynne’s diaphanous vocal delivery, to very quickly become an Austin Music Minute favorite. The romantic pull and torrid heart string tension of this dark and lovely pop belongs in your ears now.

Lynne will give a solo performance tonight at Hotel Vegas, 1501 E. 6th St., along with Mars Wright’s solo project Honey Son, and Austin-based songwriter Dottie. Doors open at 9 p.m., and the music starts at 10 p.m.  Don’t miss any of it.Recommended.

-Photography by Mike Manewitz.

Texas Standard: January 28, 2019

Another Presidential Tweetstorm, this time with a Texas twist: one suggesting widespread voter fraud. We’ll take a closer look at the claim and the source. Also, a Texas city won national attention for becoming the first to go with 100% renewable electricity. Now some are asking did the city pay too high a price? We’ll take a look. And chaos in Venezuela leading to uncertainty in Texas: we’ll hear why. Also, the Corpus Christi caller times warns: what you don’t know about a particular routine government procedure can hurt you. The paper’s opinion editor explains plus a whole lot more today on the Texas Standard:

Beth // James: “Wasted on Sundays”

Mikaela Beth Kahn and Jordan James Burchill met just over a decade ago while studying music, and now masters of indie folk, they’re known around Austin as Beth // James. It’s only been three years since the duo began formally writing together but their longtime bond has lent itself to the charm, sincerity and heart within Beth // James’ music. In 2017 Beth // James released their debut EP All In Life, and last year their song “Lion Eyes” made its way into Spike Lee’s Oscar-nominated BlackKklansman.

Blending American tradition, modern folk and hints of indie pop and rock, Beth // James drops their sophomore record, Falling, this Friday! Join them for the release show that night at the Cactus Cafe and enjoy one third of Falling with “Wasted on Sundays”!

A Tribute to the Late Alex Haley (Ep. 8, 2019)

On this week’s In Black America, producer and host John L. Hanson, Jr. presents a 1988 interview with the late Alex Haley, the acclaimed writer best known for The Autobiography of Malcolm X, a classic of African American literature and Roots: The Saga of an American Family, based on Haley’s own efforts to trace his African ancestry.

Electric Power

No doubt it was an added surge of energy, that extra bit of inspiration, having Jody Stephens working with The Reputations on their latest release in the very same space his own band, Big Star, made their albums.

It totally makes sense. Ardent Studios in Memphis is the birthplace of Electric Power, an LP surging with these classic ‘60s garage and ‘70s AM rock/pop sounds executed to perfection. Producer Stephens tapped into some excitingly brilliant moments with the Austin-based band, especially the outstanding vocals led by the phenomenal Rockyanne Bullwinkel.

Treat yourself to what will undoubtedly be an incredible live performance when you see The Reputations tonight at The Continental Club, 1315 S. Congress. The line-up features sets by The Joe Jacksons, and Sweet Spirit‘s Josh Merry’s musical project, Glass Grapes.

Holy hell. This is no exaggeration. Very recommended.

-Photography by Jackson Montgomery Schwartz.


Music knows no boundaries, both literally and figuratively. To fill you in on the basic details, Austin quartet Ley Line will start out with their own band name – a reference to a pattern laid throughout the planet connecting important points of civilization. From that alone, questions arise: How was the world formed? What exactly inspires people to travel and experience cultures other than their own? Is this what’s made music the great connector?

This is the fuel that feeds Ley Line’s fire. And it’s the collective talents and experiences of bandmates Kate Robberson, Emilie Basez, and sisters Madeleine and Lydia Froncek that cultivate this deep appreciation of a universal connection. Their multilingual, harmony-rich songs merge traditional American sounds with a global experience, ranging from Latin American, to West African, to Brazilian influences.

Catch the phenomenal Ley Line tonight at the perfect spot to do so – the Cactus Cafe, 2247 Guadalupe, in the Texas Union Building. Doors open at 8 p.m., and special guest opener Little Mazarn starts the music at 8:30 p.m. This one comes very recommended.

-Photo courtesy of the artist.

KUT Weekend – January 25, 2018

The State Preservation Board ponders where to put a Confederate plaque removed from the state capitol. Plus, programs in Williamson and Dallas counties that offer young offenders an alternative to incarceration. And who were the streets named after in the Highland neighborhood in North Central Austin? Those stories and more in this edition of KUT Weekend!

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Government Shutdown

The ongoing partial government shutdown is causing frustration on both sides of the aisle and causing major problems in the lives of many. That was the inspiration for this Typewriter Rodeo poem.

Texas Standard: January 25, 2019

Slate magazine claims the supreme court is preparing to make every states gun laws look like Texas, but is that claim on target? We’ll take a closer look. Also, when was the last time a nuclear arms treaty was making headlines? Why some are warning of a renewed arms race with Russia. And we’ll take a look at the week that was in Texas politics, plus an original Cosmic Cowboy comes home again: singer songwriter Michael Martin Murphy teams up with who’s who of Texas talent in search of old Austin. All those stories and a whole lot more today on the Texas Standard: