We’re thrilled to be covering the Austin City Limits Music Festival (ACL) again this year. Whether you are going Weekend One, Weekend Two, with or without kids, we want to be your go-to source for the Festival. We’ve listened to all the bands and have picked the ones we think you should have on your schedule. Are you ready for some great music?!
Austin-based singer/songwriter Dana Falconberry conjures up the power of nostalgia and memory in her dreamy, lyrical songs. Her latest album, Leelanau, released in 2012, was inspired by her summer pilgrimages to Michigan. Dana moved to Austin in 2004 and has had a stint with the indie folk band Peter In the Wolf before releasing three albums on her own. Now Dana is backed by a six-piece band, including Gina Dvorak, Karla Manzur, Matthew Shepherd (proud papa to two adorable girls), Christopher Cox and Lindsey Verrill.
Listening to Dana’s songs is a breath of fresh air, a window into a simpler time and the perfect antidote to our harried lives. I’ve been meaning to catch the band locally, but haven’t, so I’m looking forward to seeing how her fairy-like voice carries across the verdant, almost-too-green grass of Zilker at ACL.
We caught up with Dana recently, and were glad to have the chance to learn about what it’s like to be a musician in the Live Music Capital of the world, where she goes for inspiration and what to expect from the record she and the band is now recording.
Dana Falconberry will be playing ACL on Friday, October 4th from 12:20-1pm on the Austin Ventures Stage and at 1:30pm at the Waterloo Autograph Tent.
LiveMom: How would you describe your sound? Who are your musical influences?
Dana: A fan once called us avant-folk, and we liked the sound of that! We are a six piece band with heavy three-part harmony, so part folk, part indie, part weird. We like to spook it out. We are really heavily influenced by our friends bands, like Shelley Short, Some Say Leland, Good Field, bands that we play shows with.
LiveMom: Is this your first ACL?
Dana: Yes we are very excited!
LiveMom: What bands are you most looking forward to seeing perform at the Festival?
Dana: Definitely Phosphorescent, Neko Case, Okkervil River, The National, My Jerusalem, to name a few. I know my drummer is freaking out about seeing Shuggie Otis.
LiveMom: What do you like to do in and around Austin when you aren’t performing music?
Dana: I have a lot of other creative projects like printmaking and making videos. I can be kind of a homebody when I’m home. But there are really great places to hang out in Austin, too. I love Cheer Up Charlie’s and Hillside Farmacy and Charm School Vintage.
LiveMom: What has been your experience being a local band here in the Live Music Capital of the World? Do you find it a particularly supportive community for creatives, or do you find it challenging to build an audience when there are so many bands and venues and lots of bands from elsewhere coming here to perform (or both)?
Dana: I definitely think both of these things are true. It is hard to get peoples’ attention when there are so many great bands around town. It’s hard to get people to come out and even harder to get them to pay for music. But my fellow musicians here are SO supportive. It doesn’t feel very competitive at all, people just love playing music with other people. We are also very fortunate to have a lot of very supportive infrastructure here. There are groups in Austin that provide discounted healthcare for musicians, discounted mental health services, even discounted or free massages! So while it is a tough scene in some ways, I do feel very supported by my community here.
LiveMom: Are there any places you visit around town to get inspiration for your songwriting?
Dana: Definitely. The green belt is great. The Shoal Creek trail is also amazing. You can feel like you’re in the middle of the woods but you’re right in the middle of the city. There’s also McKinney Falls which is right outside of town and very majestic.
LiveMom: Where are some of your favorite places to perform here in Austin?
Dana: We love playing at places like The Mohawk, Stubbs, Cheer Up Charlies…places we’ve been playing for a long time. Then there’s also special places to play like The Scottish Rite Theater or Salvage Vanguard Theater that we’ve only played once or twice, and they are super magical. I also love doing secret shows with the Annie Street Arts Collective. We’ve played in the sewer system, in caves, under bridges, all over!
LiveMom: When are you planning to release your second album? Is there anything you can tell us about how you would compare it to Leelanau?
Dana: We are working hard on getting the next album done! We are in the studio now we will be working on it for the next few months. It is very different in a lot of ways from Leelanau! The songs themselves are different, they are longer and more complex. They transform from part to part. But the instrumentation is a lot different too. On Leelanau we used a lot of acoustic textures like wood and string and stuff. This album will sound a lot deeper and bigger, I think.
[author] [author_image timthumb=’on’]http://www.livemom.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Nicole-Basham-Sara-Marzani-Photography-livemom.jpg[/author_image] [author_info]A native Austinite and soccer-playing mom, Nicole uses her 7-year-old son as an excuse to rediscover her hometown through his eyes. In Thoreau’s words, her mission is to “suck out all the marrow of life”, or in her son’s words, to cultivate in him a love of “advenchers”.[/author_info] [/author]