When the Austin Music Video Festival made its debut in 2015, founders Jeremy Roye, Samantha Gallion and Anthony Erickson knew it had to make one hell of an entrance. It had to be an extraordinary celebration, not just some video retrospective. Now in its fifth year, the festival continues championing cutting edge visual creativity by local artists, featured alongside nationally and internationally-recognized names in the music industry. This year’s celebration includes five days of music video premieres and screenings, all kinds of parties and panels, and the AMVF Award Show at the Austin School of Film as the grand finale.
This year’s AMVF kicks off tonight with a performance by Me Nd Adam (featured on today’s Austin Music Minute), and a DJ set by songwriter and KUTX’s Song Confessional host Walker Lukens at The Parish, 214 E. 6th St. Doors at 9 p.m. You can check out the AMVF’s website for the full schedule and ticket information.
-Photo of Me Nd Adam courtesy of the artist.
It’s a tale of two mixtapes. Really, “mixtape” is the appropriate description. These are tracks crafted with heart and soul, nothing less. It’s music that must be heard.
Richmond, VA-based artist McKinley Dixon made his debut with the release Who Taught You To Hate Yourself (2016), followed by The Importance of Self Belief (2018). The contributions and collaborations on the latter are many (“Got so much family on here, you’d think it’s a reunion”), but all lead toward a singular, powerful voice, chronicling of the depth, the intensities – the realities – of the American Black experience. Dixon’s latest work features two tracks (“Anansi, Anansi,” featured on today’s AMM, and “Wit These”) reveling in the art of storytelling as an act of revolution, on a 7-inch release from label Saddle Creek’s Document series.
-Photography by Alec Gary.
It’s the faded light at dusk, perhaps a soft amber glow, but one that’s quickly dissipating. The vast expanse before you, in its marked silence, turns you inward. The surroundings may be peaceful, almost impossibly still, but the mind is erupting. This is the evocation of Wire Mountain…
It’s the sixth studio album by recent Studio 1A guest Will Johnson, the first to be released on Austin-based label Keeled Scales, with a collection of compelling performances contributed by Jon Dee Graham (lap steel, electric guitar), Thor Harris (percussion) and folk duo Little Mazarn – including backing vocals by Lindsey Verrill that add extra dimension to the LP’s enigmatic air.
Don’t miss Will Johnson’s album release show tonight at the Cactus Cafe, 2247 Guadalupe, in the Texas Union building on the UT campus. Doors at 8 p.m., and the evening starts out with a performance by William Harries Graham.
Get there early to catch it all. This one comes very recommended.
-Photo courtesy of the artist.
Jake Lloyd has no interest in being limited by a single genre. You can hear Lloyd and his longtime producer Danny Saldivar (that’s DSII, because if you know, you know) playing with elements of soul, pop, hip-hop, alt.-rock and more on Lloyd’s self-titled debut album, and on Lloyd’s newest release, MoonLit Mornings.
If you had the opportunity to see Lloyd at The Breaks‘ official SXSW showcases this year and last, you know you can’t miss out on his album release show tomorrow night at Stubb’s indoor venue, 801 Red River. It’s another great line-up featuring Deezie Brown, and Chief Cleopatra & Drint.
Doors open at 8 p.m. Do it. Recommended.
-Photography by by Juan Figueroa for KUTX.
Your humble Austin Music Minute host was a bit slow on the draw, so it felt like lightning hitting. Aloha, the title to Son Little‘s forthcoming album set for release January 31st, reflects the music’s subject matter on multiple levels. “Aloha” is used as a greeting, and for one’s departure. It’s deeper meaning communicates love, affection, peace…compassion and mercy. At the heart of the new LP’s rich blend of soul, R&B and pop is a deep reflection upon the unequivocal freedom of letting go, trusting life to take you where you need to be.
“Letting go can be a scary prospect,” says Son Little (songwriter Aaron Earl Livingston). “But there’s beauty in it, too. Everything you leave behind opens up space for something new in your life.”
This thinking also came into play for Son Little while collaborating with French producer Renaud Letang – the first time he’s actually worked with an outside producer. “I’d always produced myself in the past,” he explains, “but it’s easy to get caught up in an endless quest for perfection when you do that. Working with Renaud let me see my work from an outsider’s perspective, and that helped me get out of my own way.”
Son Little’s current tour includes a show in the ATX tomorrow night at 3Ten at ACL Live, 310 Willie Nelson Blvd. Asheville, NC artist Christopher Paul Stelling opens. Doors at 7:30 p.m. And brace yourself. You will be moved. Very recommended.
-Photo courtesy of the artist.