Summer Stars: Smith Westerns
Here is another of our “Summer Stars,” emerging acts featured in the 2011 Relix Festival Guide who will be making the rounds this summer…
Cullen Omori and Max Kakacek formed Smith Westerns when they were students at Chicago’s Northside College Preparatory High School. But while their classmates were preparing for college and white-collar careers, Omori and Kakacek were studying the roots of punk rock. “We listened to as much music as we could and started making this really bad punk music—but opened for all these touring bands at 17,” says Omori whose younger brother Cameron also plays bass in the group. “We became part of this DIY scene in Chicago. We went to college but we stopped to go on tour with [the band] Girls. We were really poor on the road but they took care of us.”
Life on the road warped the band’s sound into the blend of garage rock, power pop, psychedelia and glam heard on its 2011 sophomore blog hit, Dye It Blonde. “The guys in Girls and [our recent tourmates] MGMT turned us onto music and inspired us to make something that could stand up to what they were doing,” Omori continues. “It is guitar rock but it’s become more refined—more organic—which comes with playing live all the time.” Though the oldest member of Smith Westerns is still in his late-teens, Omori has already learned a few important festival lessons through his years opening for other acts. “It is very different to play in front of 600 people than in front of a few thousand,” he says. “Never get too drunk too early at a festival.”
Appearing at: Sasquatch!, Bonnaroo and more.
The Howlin’ Brothers take to the Relix rooftop and share a song they wrote with Warren Haynes.
Beth Hart shares the opening track from her latest album, Bang Bang Boom Boom, live at Relix.
Jamie Lidell sets up in the Relix boiler room and delivers a tune from his 2005 album Multiply
Duane Trucks is happy to announce his new project, King Lincoln. Watch them perform “Coffee” live and acoustic at Relix’s Online-Video Coordinator’s loft in Williamsburg.
Here’s another song from Crystal Bowersox’s new record All That For This, live at Relix.
WYATT share a song in the famed Relix boiler room.
Goodnight, Texas share a song from their latest studio album, A Long Life of Living, live at Relix.
Warren Haynes performs a solo, acoustic version of “Railroad Boy” and explains how he adapted the traditional Celtic song for Gov’t Mule, backstage at the Hangout Music Festival.
Australia’s Alpine recently made their NYC debut at the Relix office with this song from their new album A is for Alpine.
In honor of Umphrey’s McGee’s return to Summer Camp this weekend, we present the group’s Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger performing this version of “The Pequod” from UM’s Anchor Drops.
- Sexmob: Cinema, Circus & Spaghetti (Sexmob Plays Fellini: The Music of Nino Rota)
- Summer Stars: Shovels & Rope
- Visions of Bonnaroo Friday (Paul McCartney, Passion Pit, Conspirator…)
- Preservation Hall Jazz Band: Free Download "Dear Lord (Give Me The Strength)"
- God Street Wine with Warren Haynes "Sweet Little Angel" (Live 1996)
- The Howlin’ Brothers "Big Time"
- Primus in Toronto
- Twice "The Joker" on Saturday at Bonnaroo (Gov’t Mule and Jack Johnson)
- Interlocken Confirms Daily Lineups, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Punch Brothers, Keller & The Keels and More Added
- Mumford and Sons Cancel Bonnaroo Show, Summer Tour
- Ed Helms: Bonnaroo, Banjos and a Bit of Phish
- Robert Hunter Will Return to the Stage for Eight Shows
- Warren Haynes to Play Jerry Garcia’s Wolf on Symphony Tour
- Tedeschi Trucks Band Share New Song
- Jack Is Back: Jack Johnson Talks Bonnaroo, ALO and New Album
- Patty Griffin in Boston
- Doctor’s Orders: So what should we call the Super Ball IX Newspaper?
- John Kadlecik Posts Statement on Bob Weir’s Collapse
- "I Wanne Be In moe.": The Latest Volunteers
- Bob Weir Escorted Off Stage During Furthur Show
- Vote for Your Favorite "I Wanne Be In moe." Contestant
- Furthur Cancels BottleRock Show as Bob Weir Is Out Of Commision
- Doctor’s Orders: What’s Your Favorite Furthur Song? (Win Copy of Relix Signed by Phil and Bobby)
- On The Verge Poll