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Featured News Taping Recap

The Mavericks rock ACL En Espanol

Somehow, it’s been twenty years since country rock eclecticians the Mavericks last appeared on Austin City Limits. Fortunately, that’s changed with the band’s third taping, an audience-free taping due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This was a special show not only due to the combo’s long-overdue return, but also because the group showcased its daring, critically-acclaimed first-ever Spanish-language album En Español. There’s always been a Latin side to the Mavericks’ freewheeling musical personality, and this show allowed them to indulge in it more overtly, much to everyone’s delight. 

Taking the stage in a semi-circle, the expanded band (horns, accordion, percussion, plus backing vocalist Lisset Diaz from Cuban rock band Sweet Lizzy Project) began the show with “La Sitiera,” a ballad perfect for lead singer Raul Malo’s powerful, Roy Orbison-esque vocals. Malo switched from his Jazzmaster to a nylon-string guitar for the Latin-folk rocking “Recuerdos.” The band then went back to electric guitars and English vocals for “Back in Your Arms Again” and “Easy As It Seems,” danceable songs that clearly take some inspiration from the Tex-Mex rock & roll in the Lone Star State in the sixties. Malo’s big smile after concluding the latter helped make up for the lack of audience feedback. The group then went back to En Español for “Mujer,” a delightful Latin pop tune, before covering Mexican star Juan Gabriel’s frisky “No Vale La Pena,” highlighted by Michael Guerra’s rippling accordion. Malo switched back to English for the slinky fan favorite “Every Little Thing About You,” which was spiced by lead guitarist Eddie Perez’s fiery fretwork. 

The band then left the stage, leaving Malo alone to sing a song “so connected to this place” – the Willie Nelson classic “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain” – a song tailor-made for Malo’s smooth croon. As was “Me Olvidé De Vivir,” an early Julio Iglesias tune (and favorite of Malo’s grandfather) made the Mavericks’ own in a folky arrangement. Diaz featured on heavenly harmony vocals for “Cuando Me Enamoro,” a lush number she co-wrote with Malo, and the hip-swaying “Come Unto Me,” a live favorite with dueling guitar and accordion solos from Perez, Malo and Guerra. The Mavericks closed the set with  the rollicking “As Long As There’s Loving Tonight,” frosted with rockabilly rhythms, Jerry Dale McFadden’s pumping piano, back-to-back-to-back horn solos, Guerra’s spicy squeezebox and Malo’s ever-boisterous singing. That high-energy closer earned a round of applause from our crew, as well as some off-camera wag’s cheeky comment, “OK, good rehearsal, guys!” It was a hell of a closer, and we can’t wait for you to see the hourlong broadcast airing November 21 as part of our upcoming Season 46 on your local PBS station. 

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Featured Live Stream News Taping Announcement

ACL to live stream 9/22 taping with The Mavericks

Austin City Limits is thrilled to announce we will be live streaming our taping with GRAMMY, CMA & ACM award-winning eclectic roots rock band The Mavericks on Sept. 22 at 7 p.m. CT at this location

The Mavericks make their third appearance on the ACL stage showcasing a career milestone, their first Spanish-language album, En Español, which debuted at #1 on Billboard’s Latin Pop Albums Chart. The genre-bending Country, Americana and Tejano-infused Rock & Roll band, who celebrated their 30th Anniversary in 2019, comes full circle to their early Miami roots to mesh their uplifting eclecticism with a collection of their own Spanish language originals, and classic Latin tracks from which they drew inspiration. The 12-song collection represents a diversity of musical styles and cultural traditions, from tender boleros to brassy mariachi to reimagined Afro-Cuban classics and their unique take on classic tracks from the vast Latin American songbook, while five are originals written or co-written by the group’s co-founder Raul Malo. “This is the record I’ve been wanting the Mavericks to make for a very long time,” says Malo, the nine-piece outfit’s famously expressive lead singer. “I’m a first generation Cuban-American, and some of these songs are songs my family would play and sing on weekends at family parties and get-togethers. But it’s not all nostalgia either. There are plenty of new original songs that put this record squarely in the moment for us.” The foundation of En Español is solidly Latin with streaks of irreverent rock and twangy guitars running through it, all branded with the unmistakable Mavericks style. “This album, to me, celebrates all those cultures that are so beautiful and so vibrant,” says Malo. “I’m proud of this record for that. I think it’s a very inclusive record. Because this story is not just my story, it’s the story of a lot of Latinos.”

The chart-topping En Español was released in August to critical raves: “A show-stopping Spanish-language album” (Rolling Stone); “The Mavericks demonstrate the truth in their band’s name here more than ever, though the members have succeeded in making new music seem familiar and right at home in America, a melting pot of a country. (Pop Matters); “The Mavericks have already proven that they can effortlessly bound across genres …[Now], the band shows that they are just as potent in another language (American Songwriter);  “This record is a real milestone” (NPR). 

Join us here on Sept. 22 at 7 p.m. CT for this one-of-a-kind performance by The Mavericks. The broadcast episode will air as part of our new Season 46, premiering October 3 on PBS.

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Featured News

Austin City Limits announces Season 46

Live music beacon Austin City Limits proudly announces the fall return of the series and the initial Season 46 broadcast line-up; new installments begin airing October 3 as part of the program’s thirteen-episode season. With live music still on pause, ACL brings fans a full season filled with highly-anticipated debuts from some of today’s most talked-about live acts, as well as deep dives featuring ACL legends. The program continues its extraordinary run as the longest-running music television show in history. ACL has been broadcast on PBS since the series’ inception in 1974, and is proud to salute PBS as they celebrate a milestone 50 years on the air on October 4, 2020. 

Austin City Limits returns this fall with a gem: a poignant season premiere featuring the best of late songwriting giant John Prine’s eight appearances on the series, starting with his ACL debut in 1978. The legendary singer/songwriter appeared regularly on ACL throughout his celebrated five-decade career, and this hour-long tribute captures his evolution with twelve classics, including his final appearance in 2018 during Season 44. The requiem showcases Prine’s signature wit and wisdom, detailing the stories behind the songs and includes a never-before-aired 1987 performance of his classic “Sam Stone.” Prine’s singular talent was revered by generations of songwriters and the retrospective will feature a heartfelt introduction recorded by Americana star Jason Isbell.

The season continues with highly-anticipated debut appearances: UK country soul sensation Yola showcases her 2020 Grammy-nominated album Walk Through Fire in a dazzling hour. Acclaimed singer/songwriter Rufus Wainwright makes his ACL debut performing career highlights alongside selections from Unfollow the Rules, his first new pop album since 2012; Wainwright is backed by members of North Texas bands Midlake and the Texas Gentleman in a stunning hour. Breakout blues, rock, R&B, soul singer/guitar-slinger, Austin’s own Jackie Venson, makes her highly-anticipated ACL debut. Rock and country trailblazers The Mavericks make their third appearance on the ACL stage showcasing their chart-topping, all Spanish-language album, En Español

ACL reprises a particularly timely and relevant installment: John Legend and The Roots: Wake Up! Inspired by the 2008 Presidential election, the 2011 hour features the giants of R&B and hip hop teaming up to perform a collection of socially-conscious cover songs from the 60s and 70s. ACL also encores one of the most-requested episodes in its canon: Ten-time Grammy winner Bonnie Raitt’s stellar 2012 appearance, featuring a hit parade of classics.

Season 46 salutes a pair of ACL legends on the milestone anniversary of their iconic ACL appearances: Stevie Ray Vaughan: 30 Years On, an hour-long special, features highlights from the legendary bluesman’s signature performances on ACL in 1983 and 1989, bookends of an incredible career from Austin’s pride & joy, and two of the most-requested episodes in the history of ACL. Stevie Ray made his final performance on Austin City Limits on October 10, 1989, and thirty years after his tragic death on August 27, 1990, ACL showcases both performances in their entirety in a rare broadcast featuring back-to-back classics including “Texas Flood”, “Voodoo Child” and “Crossfire” from the Austin legend and his band Double Trouble. 

Also on deck is a special ACL Presents installment: 50 Years of Asleep at the Wheel. This hour-long retrospective offers a fascinating look at the band’s evolution from the 1970s to the present via highlights from their many appearances on ACL. For 50 years, founder Ray Benson & Asleep at the Wheel have been the chief practitioners, conspirators and caretakers of Western swing, carrying the genre’s traditions well into the 21st century, reaching both their contemporaries and inspiring a new generation of artists. 

“As we launch a brand new season in very uncertain times, ACL continues to break new ground,” said longtime ACL executive producer Terry Lickona. “To begin, we celebrate the great John Prine, who was one of the early victims of the COVID pandemic. We’ll also look back at Austin’s pride and joy, Stevie Ray Vaughan, three decades since his passing. But, as always, we’ll welcome some first-timers and spotlight the best of what’s happening in Austin today.”

Austin City Limits has created a new opening sequence https://youtu.be/4ZPKRvbukoM to mark these historic times, acknowledging the challenges local Austin and Texan acts have faced during the global pandemic. The opening features Austin’s Black Pumas “Colors” and showcases many of Austin’s own homegrown talents captured at their homes and front porches, including Ruthie Foster, Ray Wylie Hubbard, White Denim, Jackie Venson, Lyle Lovett, Shawn Colvin, Black Pumas and more.

Season 46 Broadcast Line-up (six new episodes to be announced):

October 3 The Best of John Prine (featuring Jason Isbell intro)

October 10 Yola

October 19 Stevie Ray Vaughan 30 Years On

October 24 Rufus Wainwright

October 31              ACL Presents: 50 Years of Asleep at the Wheel

November 7 John Legend & The Roots: Wake Up! (encore)

November 14 Bonnie Raitt (encore) | Jackie Venson

November 21         The Mavericks

Tune-in, log on, and let ACL be a trusted sidekick for entertainment during these challenging days. The complete line-up for the full 13-week season 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 and IG. Fans can also browse the ACL YouTube channel for exclusive songs, behind-the-scenes videos and full-length artist interviews.

Austin City Limits is produced by Austin PBS, KLRU-TV and funding is provided in part by Dell Technologies, RigUp, the Austin Convention Center Department and Cirrus Logic. Additional funding is provided by the Friends of Austin City Limits. Learn more about Austin City Limits, programming and history at acltv.com. 

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Featured News Taping Announcement Uncategorized

ACL prepares for unconventional season 46

Despite the challenges we’ve faced this year, plans for Austin City Limits Season 46 remain – the 13-episode season Austin PBS will deliver to PBS stations nationwide this fall will be a mix of new, already-taped episodes and selections from our archives. The new season will premiere October 3 and will provide a rare opportunity to go back to our early ACL roots with an emphasis on local Austin and Texan acts.

Our reopening task force and partners at ACL Live at The Moody Theater remain vigilant in working toward safely gathering in the venue for music; however, the local increase in Covid-19 cases, along with state and local ordinances, have inhibited plans to bring in a studio audience for the near future. While we can’t wait to have fans back with us safely in the studio again, in the interim we are pleased to announce that we are on track to resume production with four confirmed tapings, and will do so with a limited production crew and heightened safety measures in place. The artists include the ACL debut of singer/songwriter Rufus Wainwright on Sept. 10, the third taping for rock and country trailblazers The Mavericks (supporting their first all-Spanish album En Espanol) on Sept. 22, and the debut of Austin singer/guitar slinger Jackie Venson on Oct. 1. 

To mark these historic times, acknowledging the challenges local Austin and Texan acts have faced during the pandemic, we have created a new opening sequence that will air during Season 46. The opening features Austin’s Black Pumas’ hit “Colors,” and showcases many of Austin’s own homegrown talents captured at their homes and front porches, including Ruthie Foster, Ray Wylie Hubbard, White Denim, Jackie Venson, Lyle Lovett, Shawn Colvin and more.

We thank you for your loyal support during this challenging time and we can’t wait to be back in the studio with y’all again!