Austin City Limits announces first half of Season 45

Gary Clark Jr. on Austin City Limits ©️KLRU photo by Scott Newton

The iconic television music series Austin City Limits announces the first half of the Season 45 broadcast line-up with seven all-new installments to begin airing October 5 as part of the program’s fourteen-episode season. The stellar slate of broadcast episodes features highly-anticipated debuts from today’s most talked-about live acts, and the return of ACL legends, continuing Austin City Limits’ extraordinary run as the longest-running music television show in history. Providing viewers a front-row seat to the best in live performance for a remarkable 45 years, the series airs weekly on PBS stations nationwide (check local listings) and full episodes are made available online for a limited time at pbs.org/austincitylimits immediately following the initial broadcast. 

photo by Scott Newton

photo by Scott Newton

Austin City Limits returns this fall with a season premiere featuring a blistering hour with Austin’s own Gary Clark Jr., marking the acclaimed musician’s third appearance on the series. Indie-rock titans Vampire Weekend make a highly-anticipated appearance in a must-see hour showcasing their first album in five years. A season highlight features the return of Americana icon Steve Earle, making his fifth appearance with a tribute to the legendary songwriter Guy Clark; Earle is joined by his band The Dukes and special guests including Rodney Crowell and Joe Ely for choice Clark classics alongside Earle’s own gems from his songwriting catalog. One of Americana’s finest singer-songwriters, Patty Griffin returns for her sixth appearance, sharing an episode with New Orleans rock band The Revivalists in their ACL debut. Next-generation country is showcased with two new artists representing the genre’s expansive range sharing an episode: chart-topping Kane Brown and breakout Canadian folk & western singer Colter Wall. Austin City Limits continues its mission of spotlighting innovators with stunning new hours featuring R&B sensation H.E.R., a two-time 2019 Grammy® Award-winning singer-songwriter-guitarist, and singer-songwriter phenom Maggie Rogers, both making their ACL debuts.

photo by Scott Newton

photo by Scott Newton

“Over the decades ACL has built its reputation on introducing the most original, innovative and eclectic music from every genre,” said ACL executive producer Terry Lickona. “Music fans love to discover artists and sounds they’ve never heard before, or re-discover artists and songs that have stood the test of time. There’s no better place to find them than Austin City Limits, and this season is a perfect example!” 

For the series milestone Season 45, the broadcast has a new opening featuring Austin indie stars Spoon’s classic “Hot Thoughts” and showcasing many of Austin’s own homegrown talents captured at the live music capital’s many colorful locations.

Season 45 Broadcast Line-up (seven new episodes to be announced):

October 5  Gary Clark Jr.

October 12  Maggie Rogers

October 19  Steve Earle & The Dukes: A Tribute to Guy Clark

October 26  H.E.R.

November 2   Patty Griffin / The Revivalists

November 9  Vampire Weekend

November 16  Kane Brown / Colter Wall

November 23  ACL Presents Americana 18th Annual Honors

For the ninth consecutive year, the producers of Austin City Limits, in conjunction with producers Martin Fischer, Michelle Aquilato, Edie Hoback and the Americana Music Association, are proud to present a special ACL Presents on November 23 featuring the best music performances from this year’s 18th Annual Americana Music Association Honors and Awards Ceremony to be held September 11, 2019 at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN. The broadcast is a celebration of the diverse sounds of roots music, from folk, bluegrass and alt-country to R&B and the blues. 

The complete line-up for the full 14-week season, including seven new episodes to air beginning December 31, 2019, will be announced at a later date. Austin City Limits continues to offer its popular live streams of select performances for fans worldwide on ACL’s YouTube Channel. Viewers can visit acltv.com for news regarding live streams, future tapings and episode schedules.

Rising country superstar Kane Brown opens ACL Season 45

photo by Scott Newton

There are no two ways about it: 25 year-old Kane Brown is contemporary country’s fastest rising star, as well as the first country singer to have a number one single on all five Billboard country charts. We here at Austin City Limits love hosting talented newcomers, so we were happy to welcome the Georgia native as the first taping of Season 45, with a live streamed set of hits and deep cuts from his pair of albums.

Following executive producer Terry Lickona’s opening remarks, Brown joined his band onstage and wasted no time jumping right into “Baby Come Back to Me,” the rocking opening cut from his hit album Experiment. The singer followed with his first number one hit, the equally rock-oriented “What Ifs”.  Brown and the band changed the mood with “Weekend,” a mellow party tune that incorporated a R&B vibe. “This song is my baby – it got my life started,” he stated by way of introduction to the ballad “Used to Love You Sober,” the song he posted online that got him his record deal, and a tune with which the audience sang along. From one of his oldest to his most recent: the devotional country soul of “Good As You” proved why it was poised to be his next hit, especially given the crowd’s eager participation.

Biracial and raised by a single mother, Brown detailed being subjected to bullying, racism and abuse as a child, before launching into the mid-tempo “Learning,” a song about letting go of the negativity of the past. Appropriately, that tune led into “American Bad Dream,” a tough country rocker about school shootings. Every band-member except keyboardist Cameron Pessarra and fiddler Lars Thorson left the stage, as Brown took a seat for the self-explanatory ballad “Homesick,” dedicated to those serving overseas. Guitarist Jimmie Deeghan replaced Pessarra for “Work,” a tune literally about the hard work it takes to make a relationship – a topic near to the heart of the freshly wed Brown. Piano switched out for guitar once again for another ballad, the passionate “Live Forever.”

The band retook the stage to dispel the serious mood with the slide guitar-slathered “Short Skirt Weather,” kickstarting the party vibe again. The guitar-heavy “Found You” followed, leading into the thundering Southern rock chug of “Pull It Off.” Brown then re-incorporated the audience into the show, engaging in a call-and-response chorus with the romantic hit “Heaven.” Brown ended the show with the anthemic “Lose It,” exiting the stage to wild applause as his band continued to rock. It was a crowd-pleasing show, and we can’t wait for you to see it when it airs this fall on your local PBS station.  

ACL to live stream March 3 Kane Brown taping

KaneBrown_Livestream_45_square

Austin City Limit is pleased to announce that we will be live streaming the first taping of our new Season 45, with country star Kane Brown in his ACL debut on March 3. The performance will stream via the ACL YouTube channel here.  

Hailed by the New York Times as “one of Nashville’s most promising young stars and also one of its most flexible,” three-time American Music Award-winner Kane Brown earned accolades throughout a milestone 2018, including his selection by the Associated Press as one of 2018’s Breakthrough Entertainers of the Year, and landed a No. 1 album with his sophomore release, Experiment. With that chart-topping debut, the Georgia native became the only male country artist in more than twenty-four years to debut at the top of the Billboard 200, and one of only three country artists to top the Billboard 200 chart in all of 2018. He first made history by becoming the first-ever artist to top all five Billboard Country charts with his 2016 breakthrough self-titled debut.  Brown recently topped the airplay charts with his third consecutive No. 1 single at country radio, “Lose It,” following chart-topping hits “What Ifs” and “Heaven.” His boundary-pushing musical style, undeniable fan connection, and trailblazing path have earned him accolades as as the “the future of country music” (Billboard).  ‘I’m just a guy who wants to make people realize you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover,” says Brown.  “I’m just somebody who’s wanting, no matter what race you are, if you like country music, if you want to be in country music, then you can be. Just look at me, and come on.”

Join us on March 3 for this full set live stream of Kane Brown’s debut taping here. The broadcast version will air on PBS as part of our upcoming Season 45.

Giveaway: Kane Brown 3/3

photo by Joseph Llanes

UPDATE giveaway is now over.

Austin City Limits will be taping a performance by Kane Brown on Sunday, March 3rd at 8 pm at ACL Live at The Moody Theater (310 W. 2nd Street, Willie Nelson Blvd). We will be giving away a limited number of space available passes to this taping. Enter your name and email address on the below form by noon on February 27th.

Winners will be chosen at random and a photo ID will be required to pick up tickets. Winners will be notified by email. Passes are not transferable and cannot be sold. Standing may be required. No photography, recording or cell phone use in the studio. No cameras computers or recording devices allowed in venue.

New tapings: Kane Brown, Gary Clark Jr., the Revivalists and Rainbow Kitten Surprise

photo by Joseph Llanes

Austin City Limits is elated to announce the first tapings of our new Season 45: rising country star Kane Brown on March 3, Austin’s favorite son, Gary Clark Jr., on March 5, New Orleans rock band The Revivalists on April 9 and North Carolina alternative rockers Rainbow Kitten Surprise on May 6.

Hailed by the New York Times as “one of Nashville’s most promising young stars and also one of its most flexible,” three-time American Music Award-winner Kane Brown earned accolades throughout a milestone 2018, including his selection by the Associated Press as one of 2018’s Breakthrough Entertainers of the Year, and landed a No. 1 album with his sophomore release, Experiment. With that chart-topping debut, the Georgia native became the only male country artist in more than twenty-four years to debut at the top of the Billboard 200, and one of only three country artists to top the Billboard 200 chart in all of 2018. He first made history by becoming the first-ever artist to top all five Billboard Country charts with his 2016 breakthrough self-titled debut.  Brown recently topped the airplay charts with his third consecutive No. 1 single at country radio, “Lose It,” following chart-topping hits “What Ifs” and “Heaven.” His boundary-pushing musical style, undeniable fan connection, and trailblazing path have earned him accolades as as the “the future of country music” (Billboard).  ‘I’m just a guy who wants to make people realize you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover,” says Brown.  “I’m just somebody who’s wanting, no matter what race you are, if you like country music, if you want to be in country music, then you can be. Just look at me, and come on.”

photo by Frank Maddocks

Grammy Award-winning Gary Clark Jr. hits the ACL stage for his third headliner show, on the heels of the release of his highly-anticipated This Land, his third studio album for Warner Bros. Records, out February 22.  The charged songs on This Land offer a rich window into the afro-cosmic musical soul of Clark, with themes that reflect introspective intimacy and unapologetic cultural consciousness. The sonic canvas of his rhythms, beats, melodies and ever-present guitar virtuosity on this album are his most ambitious work to date.  Rarely has an artist alchemized the sounds of the great African-American music forms into one genre-defying statement of unique power, craft and social significance, as Clark has done. As Clark himself puts it: “This album was meant to sound like D’Angelo, Parliament Funkadelic and Cream. Someone asked me why I made such an expansive album. I said, if I didn’t get it out of me, I was going to explode. It’s all just soul music.”  In a relatively short period of time, Clark has made an indelible mark for himself in the music world. He has been called “the chosen one” by Rolling Stone, and “the future of music” by President Barack Obama.  Clark is a rare artist, a genre-bender who transcends sound, style, race, gender, and age; his prowess has been witnessed on the world stage from Bonnaroo to Jay-Z’s Made In America, to Coachella, to the Roots Picnic, to Glastonbury, and many more.  We’re thrilled to welcome this hometown hero back to the ACL stage.

photo by Zackery Michael

We also welcome, for the first time, chart-topping rock band The Revivalists. On their fourth studio album Take Good Care (Loma Vista Recordings), the New Orleans rising stars deliver a bevy of anthems marked by moments of sonic complexity, celebration, and catharsis, chronicling an unbelievable ride that unassumingly commenced in 2008 with hundreds of underground shows yearly. Ten years of tireless hard work would be unexpectedly revved up by the success of the platinum-selling number one smash “Wish I Knew You,” and like any enduring band worth its salt, the octet buckled down and turned up with an album chock full of tunes worthy of even greater success, such as the #1 Triple A and Top 5 Alternative single “All My Friends”and new hit single “Change.” The Revivalists – David Shaw [lead vocals, guitar], Zack Feinberg [guitar], Andrew Campanelli [drums], George Gekas [bass], Ed Williams [pedal steel guitar], Rob Ingraham [saxophone], Michael Girardot [keyboard, trumpet], and PJ Howard [drums, percussion]— have garnered more than 300 million total streams, have drawn praise from the likes of Rolling Stone, Billboard, Buzzfeed, Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, Alternative Press, Uproxx, Flaunt, Nylon, and more, and have performed on The Late Show with StephenColbert, Jimmy Kimmel LIVE!, Ellen, TODAY and Conan. They were nominated for a Billboard Music Award and two iHeartRadio Music Awards, were named Billboard’s Top New Rock Artist of 2017 and have three years of back-to-back sold out headline tours in their biggest venues to date. In the end, The Revivalists welcome listeners on this journey with them as they set out with a newfound depth and ambition. “We’re in this together,” says Shaw. “We love to take people on an emotional rollercoaster with us. That’s what this record is. It’s who we are. There’s some real magic in that.”

photo by Matthew Salacuse

Nearly every song from ACL first-timers Rainbow Kitten Surprise unfolds in a dizzying rush of feverish yet finespun lyrics that feel both intimate and mythic. Throughout their third album How To: Friend, Love, Freefall, the Boone, North Carolina five-piece sets those lyrics to a thrillingly unpredictable sound that transcends all genre convention, endlessly changing form to accommodate shifts in mood and spirit. But while Rainbow Kitten Surprise push into some complex emotional terrain, the band’s joyful vitality ultimately makes for an album that’s deeply cathartic and undeniably life-affirming. Produced by Grammy Award-winner Jay Joyce and recorded in Nashville, How To: Friend, Love, Freefall marks Rainbow Kitten Surprise’s debut release for Elektra Records. In creating the album, the band immersed themselves in a deliberate sonic exploration, infusing their music with the kinetic energy of discovery. In sculpting the inventive arrangements and textures, Rainbow Kitten Surprise embedded each track with indelible melody and chilling harmonies with a long-lingering power. The quintet moves gracefully through infinite sounds and tones: the energetic R&B of “Fever Pitch,” the haunting a cappella harmonies of “Pacific Love,” the full-throttle frenzy of “Matchbox,” the tender psychedelia of “Moody Orange,” the tumbling folk of “Painkillers.” In working through such a kaleidoscopic sonic palette, Rainbow Kitten Surprise show the sharp musicianship and powerful camaraderie they’ve developed since forming at Appalachian State University in 2013. It wasn’t long before they’d gained a devoted following – amassing over a million streams on each song from their self-released catalog – and word spread about their unforgettable live show: a blissed-out free-for-all that typically finds frontman Sam Melo jumping right into the audience, building an unbreakable connection with the crowd, as delivered during stand-out sets at major festivals like Bonnaroo, Firefly, Sasquatch, and Austin City Limits.

Want to be part of our audience? We will post information on how to get free passes about a week before each taping. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter for notice of postings. The broadcast episodes will air on PBS later this year as part of ACL’s upcoming milestone Season 45.