As part of a project called the ATX 6, six musicians were hand-picked from the abundance of Austin artists and fully financed by the city to play 2014’s NXNE. This original attempt to infuse the city of Toronto with a taste of the Austin music scene has brewed into something much more pungent, resulting in an international tour and undeniable bonds sealing the group. An official SXSW showcase at TenOak on Saturday saw these six artists – Aisha Burns, Dana Falconberry, Jesse Moore of East Cameron Folkcore, Mrs. Glass, Carson Mchone, and Leo Rondeau – atop a mahogany stage, warmly illuminated and watched with attentive eyes by audience in awe. I am grateful to have been able to swing by long enough to be entranced by the lovely, honest Aisha Burns as she plucked away at her acoustic guitar (and my heartstrings), setting aside the trademark violin she plays in local band Balmorhea for these solo ventures. Through an artistry of beautifully constructed arrangements and intricate lyricism, Burns took us all under her wing. As delicate as a sigh, she strummed while we swooned, safe from both the cold misty weather and the general ruckus assumed by SXSW.
To open in a slideshow viewer, select any image below. All photographs © Madeline Harvey & Pop Press International.