Austin City Limits presents an acoustic double-bill: Ryan Adams paired with Shakey Graves in a new installment showcasing the acclaimed singer-songwriters. Ryan Adams, an ACL veteran who appeared in the milestone Season 40, returns with a rare, all-acoustic set, sharing the episode with Austin indie-folk rocker Shakey Graves.
Rock troubadour Ryan Adams offers a fascinating look at his acoustic side, in this intimate solo appearance filled with entertaining commentary from the artist and highlights from his standout catalog. Opening with “My Wrecking Ball,” from his Grammy-nominated 2014 self-titled solo release, Adams humorously recounts the first time he performed on ACL as a 22-year old upstart. He revisits his 2000 solo debut Heartbreaker for the melancholy “Oh My Sweet Carolina,” affably adding, “if you thought that was depressing, you haven’t heard anything yet.” “Gimme Something Good,” a 2015 Grammy-nominee for Best Rock Performance, is rendered acoustic to powerful effect. The self-deprecating artist closes the captivating set with 2002’s Demolition track “Desire,” likening it to “a 1-800-Flowers song,” while the sublime performance reveals it to be another hidden gem from his astounding body of work.
Hailing from Austin, Texas and recently crowned Best Emerging Artist at 2015’s Americana Music Awards, Shakey Graves makes his debut on ACL performing songs from his critically-acclaimed 2014 release And the War Came and 2011 debut Roll the Bones. Alejandro Rose-Garcia, better known as Shakey Graves, gained recognition with his 2011 breakout as a one-man band, in which he thumped a kick drum made from an old Samsonite suitcase. NPR raves, “The Texas singer’s charisma is matched by his warm, sometimes frenetic music.” He tours extensively, performing at music’s biggest festivals, including 2015’s Lollapalooza and ACL Fest. With his ever-present suitcase-housed kick drum, Graves kicks off an engaging set of his distinctive blend of country, blues and rock ‘n’ roll. The gifted raconteur regales his hometown crowd with tales from the road and backstory on his songwriting for a memorable ACL debut.
“This show is all about the song – the art and craft of great songs and brilliant songwriters,” says ACL executive producer Terry Lickona. “The icing on the cake is that in the case of Ryan Adams and Shakey Graves, we have two artists who know how to pull every shred of emotion, and humor, from every word and note they write. Of course we’re also proud to show off our own homegrown talent with Shakey’s first-ever ACL.”
Tune in this weekend for this episode, and, as always, check your local PBS listings for the broadcast time in your area. Go to the episode page for more info, and don’t forget to click over to our Facebook, Twitter and newsletter pages for more ACL info. Tune in next week for the Austin City Limits debut of African superstar Angelique Kidjo.