With Thanksgiving less than a week away, most Austinites are busy planning travel or holiday dinner. But that doesn’t stop the music.
No matter how we choose to spend our Turkey Day this year, we are all looking for a way to blow off a little steam and relieve some of that holiday stress. This is also the ideal time to show some appreciation and gratitude for the artists who make Austin unique. We are spoiled for choice in this town when it comes to talent. What better way to give back to the musicians who entertain us all year long than to head out to a live show or two?
For those of us about to give Thanks, these are the shows that will have you thinking of Austin’s unique music scene when you’re biting into that slice of pumpkin pie next week.
Just six years after they first formed, this artsy orchestra is on a pretty serious musical high note right now. The group, which includes up to twenty members at a time, is a glorious melding of violins, cellos, sax, banjo, and percussion. Their sound shouldn’t work, but it does. The classically trained musicians meld their stringed instruments with hip hop, rock, and jazz to create a sound unlike any other in this city. The winners of several Austin Music Awards, they have appeared on NPR’s Tiny Desk, collaborated with Amanda Palmer, Christopher Cross, and Gary Lucas, and commanded a month long residency at Joe’s Pub in New York. They will be heading back to NYC after the holidays, so make sure to catch them at one of North Austin’s coolest venues.
Texas native Sarah Jaffe started her career as a classic singer/songwriter. With her latest works, “The Body Wins” and this year’s “Don’t Disconnect,” she has transformed into an edgy and unconventional artist. The shift in her sound has paid off, earning her “Song of the Day” on NPR and rave reviews from publications like Interview Magazine. She has a smoky sultry voice, but at times her songs call to mind those of a young Laurie Anderson. With its cavernous space and excellent acoustics, The Parish is the ideal venue for her to explore the more electronic-driven songs she does so well. She also collaborated with Eminem last year, so expect some amazing and unexpected cover songs at this show.
A beloved figure in the Austin music community for forty years, W.C. Clark has long been known as “The Godfather of Austin Blues.” For the past few years, he has been a highlight of Antone’s Blue Monday Happy Hour, where he has jammed alongside Derek O’Brien, Malford Milligan, and Marcia Ball. He is also the man who influenced Jimmie and Stevie Ray Vaughan and Lou Ann Barton. Come pay homage to the man who keeps Austin blues alive at the much venerated Saxon Pub.
We first discovered Buggaboo when they performed a killer set at Lustre Pearl during HAAM Jam last December. Their brand of down and dirty Southern roots music combined with rock and Americana is the real deal. The trio features incredibly accomplished musicians Chad Pope, Clayton Colvin, and Douglas Jay Boyd. Although they are less than two years old, they have toured the country, recorded two incredible CDs, and played an official showcase at SXSW 2013. With their rich, sexy, Texas swagger, this is the kind of group that defines the best of Austin music.
Part punk rock, part orchestra, and part acoustic band, East Cameron Folklore are an experience that needs to be heard live to be believed. Mixing classical instruments with guitars and mandolins, this nine-piece group tore it up at The Black Ball a few weeks ago, and Rolling Stone has called them, “a celebratory madness…brain, heart and a clenched fist.” Judging from their previous live shows, their Saturday night residency at Hole in the Wall promises to be a stellar one.
Featured image: Mother Falcon. Photo by Bryan Rindfuss.