St. Patrick’s Day at SXSW 2021 was an absolute blast. The Black Fret showcase featured six Austin, Texas-based bands in their showcase, giving us some of that SXSW hometown flare we were missing from our couches. Featuring Sydney Wright, Ley Line, Motenko, Eimaral Sol, PR Newman, and Buffalo Hunt, the music was magical already without the added lunar backdrop. Peep the highlights and check out the work Black Fret does below!
Black Fret believes our local music is art, worthy of the support of our community just as the symphony, opera and ballet have been supported for generations. We are a 501(c)3 public charity whose mission is to support the creation and performance of local music. Since 2013 we have contributed over $3.6 million to the local music economy of Austin, Texas. Learn more or join us at blackfret.org.
Four piece Texas-based collaborative Ley Line is more than just your run-of-the-mill inspiring, “fempowered” project. These particularly soulful songstresses will be entertaining at the Black Fret SXSW on March 17, dazzling the audience with their multilingual folk music. If you get a chance to spend some time with their music, we highly recommend it.
We are lucky enough to have nabbed them for an Instagram takeover before their performance on Wednesday, so check in to our account starting around noon. Until then, here are some inspired words from the ladies themselves.
What was the first song or album that you remember hearing, and does that work of art have any influence on how you approach your music today?
Kate: “Blackbird” by the Beatles! The Beatles are a huge inspiration for us. They are songwriters and artists who wanted to explore different genres and embraced spirituality through their music. Also, their camaraderie and playfulness really resonates with how we move through the world of music together.
If you could perform three of your songs live for our audience right now, what would they be?
We would play “Senseless Way” because it reflects the challenges of this moment so perfectly and offers a lot of hope. “Oxum” is another of our favorites, it’s joyful and celebratory and everyone deserves to feel that. But it’s also an important reminder about how precious fresh water is and reminds us to continue to cultivate a relationship with our natural world. We also would play “We Saw Blue” because it’s the origin story of our band- it’s the title track off our latest album and the name of our upcoming Visual Album coming to you on May 14th.
Clearly, nothing compares to a live, in-person show, but these livestreams have fed the energy a lot of audiophiles and fans throughout the pandemic. What have you loved about performing digitally?
Maddy: It’s actually been really humbling to be present with the music and each other. We always loved playing house concerts and even got our start playing in yoga studios where the audience was completely silent. It reminds us of that intimacy and to have trust that the music is landing exactly where it needs to be.
Any thoughts on the digital SXSW experience this year?
Lydia: We’re really excited to be able to interact with the audience and new fans. It’s pretty special to get to experience our performance alongside the audience and SXSW has made a really awesome digital platform to be able to interact directly with the audience in the moment!
If you could order carryout from any place within 10 minutes of your home right now, where would you go tonight?
Fish tacos from Veracruz (in Webberville) every time.
There are so many amazing places to go when you want to get inspired. Where are you headed to next?
Emilie: Travel is a huge part of our inspiration, especially water. So we hope to get to the beach as soon as possible but until then you can find us singing by the river at Barton Springs.
What has been your favorite way to stay grounded during the pandemic?
Kate: Giving gratitude for the simple things, having a roof over our heads and food on the table. It grounds me to remember how much I have in just having my basic needs met during this time.
Anything else you’d like to add?
Subscribe to our Youtube channel to learn more about us, we’ve got a podcast, break down videos of our songs and live performances!