Austin City Limits spotlights a pair of innovators making ACL debuts in a captivating double-bill: rap star Lil Yachty showcases his genre-bending album Let’s Start Here joined by special guests; violin savant and emcee Sudan Archives performs songs from her Natural Brown Prom Queen. The new installment premieres October 21 at 7pm CT/8pm ET as part of the series Season 49. ACL airs weekly on PBS stations nationwide (check local listings) and full episodes are made available to stream online at pbs.org/austincitylimits immediately following the initial broadcast.
The program, produced by Austin PBS and recorded live at ACL’s studio home ACL Live in Austin, Texas, continues its extraordinary run as the longest-running music television show in history, providing viewers a front-row seat to the best in live performance for 49 years as the music institution nears a remarkable half-century milestone. Austin City Limits celebrates 50 years as a live music beacon in 2024: on October 17, 1974, Willie Nelson taped the pilot episode and the trailblazing series premiered in 1975. Stay tuned for news on special concerts, fan events and activations as Austin City Limits salutes an incredible legacy of 50 golden years of American musical history and iconic performances.
Rap star Lil Yachty makes a highly-anticipated ACL debut with his acclaimed release Let’s Start Here as the centerpiece. The 26-year-old Atlanta rapper brings to life the experimental, psychedelic rock-inspired album backed by an ace all-female, six-piece band dressed in all-black. Yachty, sparkling in all-white, with his signature beads and braids, glides onto the stage to album opener “the BLACK seminole,” a trippy opus featuring hard rock guitar riffs. Yachty is joined by a trio of guest artists featured on the album for this appearance: Rising star Texas rapper Teezo Touchdown delivers a thrilling rap verse on “the ride-,” contrasting Yachty’s soft, ethereal vocals for a blissed-out performance. A frequent collaborator, Yachty is joined by guest vocalist Fousheé on the stunner “pRETTy” and Justine Skye’s shimmering R&B vocals shine on “THE zone.” The performance closes with the climactic dance-groove of “drive ME crazy!” as Yachty sails to new directions with the fervent Austin audience onboard for the ride.
Sudan Archives, the performance name of Brittney Parks, delivers a commanding performance in her ACL debut, showcasing highlights from her sophomore album Natural Brown Prom Queen. The Cincinnati, Ohio-born, LA-based innovator and violin prodigy is a natural born entertainer and party-starter as she signals a call to action: “One question Austin, where my freaks at??” diving into synth-funk jam “Freakalizer” and making her first foray into the audience to dance. She prowls the stage playfully as she performs her 2017 breakout “Come Meh Way,” a song originally recorded in her Ohio bedroom. Parks has her violin strapped to her chest with a quiver of bows slung over her shoulder, and the experimental electro fiddler wields her instrument with ease, fusing modern musical influences of hip-hop and R&B with traditional Celtic and west African beats. “Who in here is Irish?” she calls out. “I love your culture. I joined the fiddle club and my life hasn’t been the same,” as she delights the crowd with a spontaneous Irish jig. The Afrocentric anthem “Selfish Soul” is a set highlight, and weaves a powerful commentary on femininity, the female appearance and self-worth. For set-closer “Limitless,” a soulful manifesto on materialism and superficiality, she asks the audience to illuminate the room with their phone lights as she wades into the crowd and they sing along with the lyric, “All we have is the internet,” for a striking close.
“Both Lil Yachty and Sudan Archives take ACL into very different directions,” said ACL executive producer Terry Lickona. “Lil Yachty shakes up the world of hip hop by exploring an entirely different sound. As for Sudan Archives, there is no one quite like her in today’s world of contemporary music. Always expect the unexpected from Austin City Limits!”
Lil Yachty setlist:
the BLACK seminole.
WE SAW THE SUN!
drive ME crazy!
Nont For Sale
Come Meh Way
Season 49 Broadcast Line-up (second half of season to be announced separately)
Oct. 7 Rodrigo y Gabriela featuring the Austin Symphony Orchestra
Oct. 14 Jenny Lewis / MUNA
Oct. 21 Lil Yachty / Sudan Archives
Oct. 28 Margo Price / Molly Tuttle & Golden Highway
Nov. 4 Jorge Drexler
Nov. 11 Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit
Nov. 18 Foo Fighters
Watch new episodes live, stream online, or download the PBS App. The complete line-up for the full 14-week season, including seven new episodes to air beginning January 2023, will be announced at a later date. Viewers can visit acltv.com for news regarding live streams, future tapings and episode schedules or by following ACL on Facebook, Twitter, IG and TikTok. Fans can also browse the ACL YouTube channel for exclusive songs, behind-the-scenes videos and full-length artist interviews.
Austin City Limits
Austin City Limits (ACL) offers viewers unparalleled access to featured acts in an intimate setting that provides a platform for artists to deliver inspired, memorable, full-length performances. Now in its 49th Season, the program is taped live before a concert audience from The Moody Theater in downtown Austin. Austin City Limits is the longest-running music series in television history and remains the only TV series to ever be awarded the National Medal of Arts. Since its inception, the groundbreaking music series has become an institution that’s helped secure Austin’s reputation as the Live Music Capital of the World. The historic Austin PBS Studio 6A, home to 36 years of ACL concerts, has been designated an official Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Landmark. In 2011, ACL moved to the new venue ACL Live at The Moody Theater in downtown Austin. ACL received a rare institutional Peabody Award for excellence and outstanding achievement in 2012.
Austin City Limits is produced by Austin PBS and funding is provided in part by Dell Technologies, the Austin Convention Center Department, Cirrus Logic and AXS Ticketing. Additional funding is provided by the Friends of Austin City Limits. Learn more about Austin City Limits, programming and history at acltv.com.