Backstage Interviews at ACL 2021


Ben Bridwell
Band Of Horses


Lead singer Ben Bridwell remains the only original member of the guitar-driven rootsy group Band of Horses that launched in Seattle nearly two decades ago. The band announced a new album “Things Are Great” is coming January 2022 and shared the single “Crutch.” Bridwell sat down with KUTX backstage at ACL to talk about Kids (both his and the movie), Otis Redding and the bad habits picked up during the pandemic.



Jade Bird



Born in Northumberland, Jade Bird moved all around Europe before settling in Wales, where she began writing songs. Pouring herself heart and soul into her 2019 single “Lottery”, she won national acclaim, a label deal with Glassnote Records, and eventually, a new home in Austin, where she first showcased her music during South by Southwest. Her latest album, “Different Kinds of Light”, was released in August

The singer-songwriter dropped by our tent at ACL Fest for a chat, where we learned about her parent’s penchant for music piracy, her dream musical collaboration, and her love of Quentin Tarantino soundtracks.

– Jeff McCord, KUTX Music Editor

Isaac Brock
Modest Mouse



Montana-born Isaac Brock was brought up in a religious household but it didn’t stick. Religion surfaces alongside biographical themes and personal struggles in his work with his longtime band Modest Mouse (and his side project Ugly Casanova). He has been an A&R man for SubPop and launched his own label in 2005, Glacial Pace. Modest Mouse, currently on tour for their latest release, “The Golden Casket”, plays ACL Fest for the third time. Brock stopped by the KUTX tent backstage where he told us about the first album he ever bought, his love of Cat Stevens, and how he might be a actually be a “hugger.”

– Jeff McCord, KUTX Music Editor

Sofía Valdés



Still just in her early twenties, singer Sofía Valdés finds herself on stage for weekend one at ACL Fest. Yet her path there wasn’t straightforward. Initially reluctant of revealing her Panamanian upbringing, she absorbed her mom’s love of American Top 40, and was raised on everything from Bobby Womack to Bob Dylan. A stint at Michigan’s prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy, and another at the McCartney-founded Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, refined her skills. Posting her songs online led to an eventual deal with Warner Records. Before she could begin work, COVID sent her out of Liverpool back to her home country, 5000 miles away. Back in Panama, she collaborated remotely with name pop producers for a crafted yet intimate EP, 2020’s Ventura, which spawned a series of lush, confessional singles. And something else: a newfound appreciation for her cultural heritage. Armed with a dark yet infectious new single, “Wish You Well”, Valdés stands ready to launch her fall tour at ACL.

– Jeff McCord, KUTX Music Editor

Noga Erez

Few artists combine the thrills of danceable pop with a higher purpose, but that’s exactly what Israeli singer Noga Erez does on her remarkable new album, “Kids”, an emotional roller-coaster whose message rings out over her infectious dance music. And she carries the energy in full to the stage. Noga Erez stopped by for a chat backstage at ACL Fest and told us about the strangest place she’s ever performed, her dream collaborations, and the first album she ever bought with her own money.

-Jeff McCord, KUTX Music Editor

Audio: Jake Perlman

Cameras: Gabriel C. Pérez, Michael Minasi

Edit: Michael Minasi

Producer: Deidre Gott

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