On Thursday, August 8th, the Mood team met our friends from Austin Music Foundation at Whip In for an afternoon of music (and beverages) at our second Mood Live of Season 3! This time, we showcased AMF Artist Development Program participant William Harries Graham. It was a duo set, with William providing haunting vocals and ambient guitar work while Mike Meadows beautifully accented the beat with a hybrid drum/percussion/SPD configuration.
William comes from a musical family (he’s the son of beloved Austin singer/songwriter Jon Dee Graham) and began performing at a very young age. He was hailed as a prodigy and the “voice of his generation” after his first record release (under the band name Painted Redstarts) in 2015. Rolling Stone even declared the band the “future of Austin music.” His solo debut Jakes (mixed by Grammy winner Stuart Sullivan and released in early 2019) was met with critical acclaim. As his bio so eloquently describes, his music is a “gorgeous and layered piece of work, which combines intelligent lyrics and powerful poetic imagery with a dreamlike wash of guitars and vocals, running down everything from glorious anthems to the most delicate weepers.”
William Harries Graham’s Mood Live set gave us a taste of his recently released album mixed with selections from Foreign Fields as well as a few new songs. He ended on a high note with “Victoria,” the first single from Jakes.
Since William Harries Graham has been a fixture in the Austin music community for practically his entire life, we wanted to know his thoughts on the Live Music Capital of the World. Here’s what he had to say…
What is the most unique thing about the Austin music community? The most amazing thing about the Austin music community is the bond between the musicians, artists, and fans. Whenever anyone gets sick or falls on hard times, everyone rallies around them and tries to help. It is a really amazing community that I haven’t seen anywhere else.
Biggest challenge facing artists in the Austin music community? There are so many challenges that Austin musicians face, but I think that one of this primary ones that feeds into many others is the vast amount of musicians, venues, and shows. Every single night there are so many different shows going on that it is hard for musicians to compete. Which also feeds into musicians making less money. There is also a really housing problem in Austin that is pricing many musicians out, many musicians that I’m close with are not really able to afford living in Austin anymore.
Who are your favorite Austin artists right now? My two favorite Austin artists right now are Amy Cook and J. Wagner. Both are phenomenal singer-songwriters and musicians. I have been friends with Amy forever and also play guitar for her. J is a good friend and brilliant writer.
What’s next for you? I am gearing up to record my next record. I have been writing a ton, as I always am, and am excited to get back to recording. I am also booking some upcoming tours both nationally and internationally.
If you want to check out William Harries Graham for yourself (which we encourage), you can catch him Wednesday nights at the world renowned Continental Club in Austin, TX as part of his long-standing residency. Those outside of Austin can keep their eyes open for his forthcoming tour announcement!
One of the benefits of participating in our Mood Live series is that artists are given the opportunity to be included in our global programming, which reaches 150 million people daily! Soon you may be hearing William Harries Graham on programs like Songbook, The Arboretum, or The Cafe (check out our music samples HERE).
As always, we have to thank the amazing people that help make this live series a reality… Austin Music Foundation, Cultural Arts Division, Day Dreamer and Whip In. We’ve got one more Mood Live this season so stay tuned for details!
– Submitted by Jessica Reed, Marketing