Monday, July 18, 2016

The New Acoustic Popular Music (Part 7) - Civil Wars and Other Lives

By Don Robertson

Say Goodbye! to hard rock as it writhes in dying pain and bid Hello! to Americana, the new acoustic popular music. Thank God you have arrived. 

      In the previous articles of the New Acoustic Popular Music series, I discussed the emergence of new music that is widely divergent from the typical commercial offerings brought to us by corporate America. It is acoustic music that is mainly based on the roots music of Southeastern America. We find that it is innovative, fresh and young. Most of the musical members of this genre are under 30 years of age, or were when they started their careers. In this and the following articles in this series, I will continue to introduce this new generation of music.

Laura Marling
     Laura Marling is an English singer-songwriter who won the Brit Award for Best British Female Solo Artist in 2011. Her career had begun in 2006 when at age 16 she helped found a musical movement that was labeled "nu folk" by the British press. She was in the original line-up of the band Noah and the Whale, but she left that group in 2007 or early 2008. Her debut album Alas, I Cannot Swim was released in February of 2008.
"Ghosts" Laura Marling and Marcus Mumford

    In this video, Laura joins English singer and actor Johnny Flynn. Laura, Johnny, and the band Mumford and Sons are all considered primary members of the British musical movement that is helping to drive the new acoustic popular music:
"The Water" by Laura Marling and Johnny Flynn

Sons of Noel and Adrian
    This band is based in the seaside resort town of Brighton, England and are known for their live performances with up to 13 musicians on stage. They are founding members of the Willkommen Collective, a collective of bands from Brighton that also includes such groups as The Leisure Society, The Climbers, The Miserable RIch and Shoreline among others.
"Damien" by Sons of Noel and Adrian

Lulu and the Lampshades
     English group Lulu and the Lampshade (now known as the Landshapes) released their first album in 2009. They became famous on YouTube when they revived the great 1931 song "You're Gonna Miss Me" by America's pioneer mountain-music trio the Carter Family. They have received at this writing almost 6 million YouTube hits for this video where they used "cups" for rhythmic accompaniment. A full description of the background of the cups phenomenon that Lulu and the Lampshades created is fully documented on the webpage The History of the "Cups" PhenomenonI recommend this page because it gives us information about the folk origins of the music that many young musicians who are pioneering the new, positive acoustic music are interested in.
"You're Gonna Miss Me" by Lulu and the Lampshades

"Something New" by Lulu and the Lampshapes

Peggy Sue
     This young English band is simply called Peggy Sue. They are from Brighton and have toured with Mumford and Sons, The Maccabees, First Aid Kit and Jack White. Their first fully commercial record was released in 2010. This and two previous videos were produced by "Bandstand Busking," a London project that showcases musicians on some of the city's underused bandstands: wooden structures that were built beginning in the Victorian Era in various city parks and gardens to accommodate band concerts.
"The Sea, The Sea" by Peggy Sue 2009

The Civil Wars
     Back in the USA, the Nashville group known as The Civil Wars is a duo that was formed in 2008. They won four grammy awards before their breakup in 2014.
"Poison and Wine" by Civil Wars on Letterman 2011

Other Lives
     This Oklahoma band was formed in 2004 and released their first album in 2006.
"For 12" by Other Lives 2011

     In the next episode of "The New Acoustic Popular Music" I will continue to present videos that I hope you will love and enjoy as I do.

Enjoy the music. There is a lot more to come.

So for now, "Good music. Good Vibes." I'm Don Robertson.

© 2016 by Don Robertson