Let’s face it – it’s a good time to be a musician from the South. The past few years have seen the explosion of My Morning Jacket, The Civil Wars, Alabama Shakes and Jason Isbell onto the scene and Futurebirds can now be counted among them. The quintet formed roots in Athens, GA but its members have now relocated to various points around the Southeast. The band is now touring behind Baba Yaga, released this past April. On Tuesday, April 30, Futurebirds will perform at Iron City in support of Band of Horses. Recently, we caught up with Futurebirds member Thomas Johnson – a week before the release of Baba Yaga – by phone from Oxford, Miss.
Brent Thompson: Thomas, thanks for your time. This must be an exciting time for you given the upcoming release of the new Futurebirds album.
Thomas Johnson: We’ve run the gamut of emotions trying to get this record out and get it released. We took a long, rocky path to where we are, but we’re really glad with how everything’s going to work out. We’ll be relieved to finally get it out there into the world.
BT: How do you view the current musical climate in the age of Youtube, iTunes, satellite radio and other outlets? Some say the accessibility is great and some say there is an oversaturation of musical content.
TJ: There’s both sides to that argument that are completely correct. On one hand, you don’t have to have a big label to get your stuff out there and actually release something and it’s so cheap to get recording equipment now. It makes it so that anybody can get their stuff out there and you let the people decide what’s going to be good, not some label or industry person. But on the same hand, there are so many people doing it now and it’s an overload of content, so it’s hard to distinguish yourself. It’s an interesting struggle and it’s a push-and-pull that’s going to happen for a long time. I still think the best stuff is going to prevail anyway and I don’t think it changes what we are doing musically.
BT: How long will you will be on the road with Band of Horses?
TJ: We’re doing seven or eight shows with them over a couple of weeks. We’re certainly looking forward to playing with those guys.
Tickets to the 8 p.m. all-ages show can be purchased at www.ironcitybham.com. Iron City is located at 513 22nd Street South.