austin music

Shiela: “YO TE QUISE”

Raised in Nicaragua and inspired by the passion portrayed in 1997’s Selena, Austin indie-R&B singer Shiela began forging her own mononymous path to superstardom at a young age. Now, Shiela’s impeccable knack for crossover appeal (both genre-wise and through bilingual lyrics) has helped make her 2021 debut Chilita a treasure chest of eclecticism, one that even includes a brief feature from our very own “Fresh” Knight.

Shiela plays a quarter past two this Sunday at the Tito’s Handmade Vodka Stage for Austin City Limits Music Festival. So to get you settled into Shiela’s sentimental mindset for the weekend ahead, soak up her followup single to Chilita, “YO TE QUISE”!

The Tender Things: “You’ll Be Gone”

The forecast calls for sunny, clear skies so it’ll be a perfect weekend to appreciate The Tender Things. Frontman Jesse Ebaugh’s experiences with bluegrass and blues rock groups in Northern Kentucky laid the groundwork for this “hippie country” outfit, which was formed here in Austin only a few years ago after Ebaugh resigned from Heartless Bastards.

The Tender Things’ gritty, retro-Appalachian style first appeared on their 2017 eponymous debut and took an even darker turn with last year’s How You Make a Fool. So if you’re the type to enjoy ACL’s early afternoons, be sure to enjoy The Tender Things 1PM this Saturday at the Tito’s Handmade Vodka stage and if you won’t be there…well, “You’ll Be Gone”.

Mike Melinoe: “Vacation” (feat. JaRon Marshall)

Born in Detroit and based right here in Austin, polymath painter-producer-vocalist Mike Melinoe is a must-see for this weekend of ACL Fest. The psychedelic-minded model enjoys an enigmatic aura and incorporates the best bits of pop, rock, and R&B into his genre-inclusive hip-hop style, conquering each new venture with remarkable verbal skills and outstanding flow.

Mike Melinoe performs at Austin City Limits Music Festival a quarter past noon at the Vrbo stage and to transport you right out of that mid-work-week mindset, indulge in “Vacation” featuring co-producer JaRon Marshall!

Riders Against the Storm: “Flowers For The Living” (feat. Clarence James)

Whether you’ve attended those legendary Body Rock ATX dance parties, celebrated the official RAS Day (August 29th), or seen their name pop-up on KUTX’s playlists, chances are you’ve heard of Riders Against the Storm. Since their 2013 eponymous EP, this eclectic hip-hop duo has continued to defy any expectations of the genre by incorporating a variety of worldly sounds, most recently on this year’s feature-stacked full-length Flowers For The Living.

These three-time Studio 1A performers and previous My KUTX hosts take the Tito’s Handmade Vodka Stage 1:30pm this Friday at Austin City Limits Music Festival, so in this proverbial calm before the storm, you can bloom alongside the boom on Flowers For The Living‘s title track!

Heartless Bastards: “Revolution” (KUTX Pop-Up)

One weekend of Austin City Limits Music Festival is already in the bag but those famous flags are still flying high, so we’ve got another week of Austin artist coverage, continuing today with Heartless Bastards. Founded in Cincinnati nearly two full decades ago, this trio has transcended the expectations of traditional rock with flairs of folk, blue, country, and indie, beginning with their 2005 debut Stairs and Elevators and heard most recently on 2021’s A Beautiful Life.

We just revisited frontwoman Erika Wennerstrom’s 2018 My KUTX session ahead of these Studio 1A veterans’ upcoming ACL performance 2:30pm this Friday at the Lady Bird Stage. So we might as well return to a pop-up performance from Wennerstrom recorded right around this same time last year, “Revolution”!

Aaron Stephens: “Ready”

The gates are waiting for you and ACL Fest is officially underway! So get your fill on festival fun this Friday but if you’re an ACL early bird, a must-see for Saturday is Austin’s Aaron Stephens. The Chicago-born, South Texas-raised producer/multi-instrumentalist shines best on funk-rock guitar and grizzled vocals, as heard on Stephens’ 2014 debut LP Hard Times Straight Lines and again on his sophomore Focus from 2018.

Aaron Stephens clearly has his sights set high with the release of his EP Head 2 the Sky earlier this year, and his transcendent style takes the Vrbo stage at noon tomorrow, but if you don’t feel prepared for Stephens’ set yet, you will after his latest single, “Ready”!

Asleep at the Wheel: “Take Me Back to Tulsa” (feat. George Strait and Willie Nelson)

In less than 24 hours ACL Fest 2021 will officially begin and who better to help put things in gear than western swing icons Asleep At The Wheel? Three years after their inception in Paw Paw, West Virginia, Ray Benson steered The Wheel down here to Austin where they went on to give the final performance at the Armadillo World Headquarters and have been rolling strong ever since.

Commemorating their colossal milestone of 50 years together, Asleep At The Wheel’s LP Half a Hundred Yearcomes out tomorrow, proving that it’ll take way more than five decades for The Wheel to even consider careening off course. And mere hours after the record drops, Asleep At The Wheel takes the Honda stage, 1PM at ACL Fest, so get acquainted with AATW early with one of two new collaborative singles off Half a Hundred Years, featuring ACL 2021 headliner George Strait (who plays the same evening) and previous headliner Willie Nelson, “Take Me Back to Tulsa”!

Sir Woman: “Blame It On The Water”

If you know Wild Child or Glorietta, then you’ve already got a good idea of how talented vocalist Kelsey Wilson is. But Kelsey’s latest crowning achievement is her jazz-soul-R&B project, Sir Woman, which finds the powerhouse singer blending the best bits of Amy Winehouse, Lauryn Hill, and Norah Jones together into her own idiosyncratic style.

Sir Woman commands the Tito’s Handmade Vodka stage 1PM this Saturday at ACL Fest, and is guaranteed to keep you hydrated with her outstanding catalogue of originals, hopefully including her newest single that dropped last Friday, “Blame It On The Water”!

Deezie Brown: “Amplifiers”

Though the bulk of his studio output has been relatively recent, Bastrop-born/Austin-based producer/vocalist Deezie Brown‘s already proven plenty of potential. Following up 2018’s Judith, Brown was a contributor on ATX Gen Next: Adventures in Lockdown and makes up one half of the R&B/hip-hop collaboration Geto Gala.

Deezie Brown’s got some new material in the works, and hopefully he pulls some of that stuff out when he performs 12:15pm on the Miller Lite Stage this Sunday at ACL Fest. Until then, you can tide yourself over with a real measure of Deezie Brown’s multifaceted power on “Amplifiers”!

Jade Bird: “Honeymoon”

Austin City Limits Music Festival is officially upon us, so for the next couple weeks we’ll be shining the spotlight on Austin acts that might not be as well known as some of the major headliners, but deserve just as much attention and praise. First up is Jade Bird, who after growing up in the UK has successfully flocked over to Austin without shedding any of her rebellious rock in the process.

It’s an exciting time for Jade Bird, who appears tonight The Late Late Show with James Corden and has her Austin City Limits episode airing next Saturday on PBS. That same Saturday Jade Bird opens up ACL Fest at 12:05pm at the T-Mobile Stage and today you can toss feathers with “Honeymoon”!

Jade Bird on My KUTX (2021)

Jade Bird on My KUTX (2018)

Jade Bird in Studio 1A (2017)

Go Fever: “FYI” (KUTX Pop-Up)

As temperatures dramatically drop here in Texas, it seems fitting to give Go Fever the “all clear” to heat things up again. After charismatic mastermind Acey Monaro spent a year in the respite of her Australian motherland, these two-time Studio 1A veterans seem right at home back here in Austin as our September 2021 Artist of the Month.

And true to their name (minus any rushed negligence), Go Fever’s always got a sense of anticipation for their next rock project, in this case the upcoming Velvet Fist. The catchy, sarcastic beast that is Velvet Fist is set to drop hard on October 8th, and Go Fever guest hosts My KUTX this weekend, but the big news today is a close-knit two-song at-home pop-up session, which includes “Long Run” and “FYI”!

Fertility House: “Mockingbird”

One of the hottest topics in Texas right now surrounds birth, but this isn’t really the appropriate forum to talk politics so instead let’s focus on Fertility House. The four Austin transplants of Fertility House made their debut in 2018 with their eponymous LP, showcasing the band’s knack for upbeat-yet-smooth and at times politically-charged indie garage pop.

Fertility House kept that momentum rolling into 2020 with last year’s Extra Light EP and is now entering the final trimesters of a brand new record. We’ve only got a couple singles so far, but each packs the purity of turn-of-the-millennium indie and gives acts like Vampire Weekend a run for their money. And even though Austin’s the land of grackles, there’s a certain je-ne-sais-quois of Fertility House’s latest, “Mockingbird”, that captures the charm of our city and you can catch the single release show on Saturday, October 2nd at Swan Dive.

Flyjack: “Can’t Catch Me”

Even with the mass proliferation of digital production trends in the past three decades, there’s something inherently retro about the funk-soul sound. Austin group Flyjack knows this all-too-well, having just released a record named after an airline that bit the dust right when computers were becoming commonplace in the music world.

Pan Am gives you a first class ticket to a full spectrum of soul and funk and presents Flyjack soaring higher than they’ve ever been. Pan Am is out now without any of the restrictions you’d experience on a present-day flight, and today Flyjack’s given us another complementary carry-on, the heist-oriented music video for “Can’t Catch Me”!

Frederico7 “Missing My Children”

We might’ve just kicked off Hispanic Heritage Month, but that doesn’t mean we should overlook Spanish’s distant cousin, Portuguese, and subsequently the music of Brazil. Enter Frederico7, the Austin-based Brazilian soul-rocker who first captivated the Live Music Capital with a Latin-leaning vatapá of South American sounds on his 2019 debut LP Exótico Americano.

Frederico7 brings o calor to the stage tomorrow night at Far Out Lounge for South Americano Fest, celebrating two new singles that dropped this morning, which are both produced and engineered by the legendary Beto Martinez and tease an upcoming all-English album for 2022. If you’re feeling more of an ’80s-pop vibe, you might want to check out “Truth is Power” first, but if you’re like me and enjoy combating the sun with some sweltering dub reggae, you’re gonna want to blast “Missing My Children”!

El Dusty, Adan Cruz, Serko Fu, and Morenito de Fuego: “Camara Lenta”

If you’re looking to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with a bit of dancing, there are few artists more capable of bringing the house down than El Dusty. On top of being a Latin Grammy Nominee and beloved crate-diggin’ turntablist, this Corpus Christi-born DJ/producer/composer is also a leading pioneer in the nu cumbia/electronic cumbia movement, and delights us with each new innovative offering.

The previous My KUTX guest host kicks off his regional tour 6PM tomorrow night at Mala Vida and to dip your toes in early, zone out to El Dusty’s latest collaborative single (and music video), “Camara Lenta“!

The Dragon Berries: “Island”

With the exception of iconic industry shifters who made it look easy like Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rage Against the Machine, or dare I say, even Limp Bizkit, the mashup genre of rap-rock can be a treacherous territory to navigate. That said, Austin four-piece The Dragon Berries seems to have hit a stride in the hip-hop-meets-alt-rock field, beginning with 2019’s “We Got the Funk”.

The Dragon Berries have spent the pandemic writing a new batch of tracks, including a real winner recorded at The Bubble with Chris “Frenchie” Smith that just premiered this morning. Far from an isolated example of The Dragon Berries’ talent, “Island” encompasses the group’s cross-genre escapism all under four minutes, and is officially available to provide respite whenever you need!

Lola Tried: “Make It Better”

Going back to the genre’s mid-’80s heyday with Big Boys and Dicks, punk rock has been a major part of Austin’s musical character. And though there are a number of groups that continue the Austin punk legacy into the 2020s, few can package their sound with the same accessibility of Lola Tried. Fronting vocalist-guitarist Lauren Burton first treated us to her four-piece’s pop-punk sweets on 2017’s Popsicle Queen and made Lola Tried’s eponymous, full-album debut the following year.

After yanking out the proverbial tooth on Lola Tried, these two-time Studio 1A veterans have cleared out any unwanted abscesses of the band’s infantile days and put their evolved formulas on display with Lola Tried’s just-released sophomore EP, Renvers. On average these songs are a little slower, a little longer with more intricate structures, and on the whole more mature sounding than their predecessors, though they still pack the same punch as those early energizers and continue to carry the emotional weight that’s always made us love this quartet. Lola Tried celebrates the release of Renvers tonight at Native Hostel along with A. Sinclair, Warm Sugar, and The Gospel Truth and whether or not you can make it out, you can certainly improve the quality of your weekend right now with “Make It Better”!

Dayglow: “Medicine” (KUTX Pop-Up)

With the sun out and about and temperatures hitting nearly triple digits this week, it might not be a bad idea to just simmer in the sweat and embrace the Dayglow. Austin multi-instrumentalist Sloan Struble blew us away in 2019 with Dayglow‘s debut album, Fuzzybrain, and invited us to get a little more intimate with his indie pop project even more recently through his sophomore LP, Harmony House.

Dayglow plays this Friday at Stubb’s but if you’re still iffy on going out, the Studio 1A veteran was kind enough to let our multi-media team stop by for a four-song video set, featuring two tracks from Fuzzybrain and Harmony House. Either way, you’re going to want a Dayglow-prescribed dose of “Medicine”…

The Watters: “Out of the Darkness”

Though husband-and-wife songwriting team Daniel and Jenna Watters have spent the past half decade in Austin, their flow of Americana-soul dates back to the early 2010s. The Watters‘ evolving stream of retro-style rock and contemporary funk sounds has decidedly bubbled up since their time here with the addition of a five-piece backing band, complete with a horn section.

Following the release of their LP Intuition at the top of 2021, The Watters celebrate their ten-year anniversary tomorrow night at The Belmont. The music kicks off at 7:30pm and the suggested illumination of gold attire should help you crawl “Out of the Darkness” of pandemic or political unrest and glisten against The Watters’ soulful tides.

Foxtales: “Oceans of Time”

For the past few years Austin multi-instrumentalist Jonathan Fox has built up a repertoire of indie pop under the handle Foxtales. And though he already totes a robust coat of colors, Foxtales ventures even further into the realm of chillwave with a more synth-reliant sound on his upcoming fourth record, Perfect Landing.

Perfect Landing touches down on September 17th, and the next day promises a full five-piece release show performance at Swan Dive that you won’t want to miss. For today though, you can ride the tide out of the weekend and ease back into the 9-to-5 mindset with the EP’s just-released, brilliantly-mellow single (and music video), “Oceans of Time“!