Austin is an amazing city for live music, and what Migrant Kids have accomplished over the last couple of years speaks to that. From being named Best New Band 2014-15 by Austin Chronicle, to receiving a Black Fret major grant, this trio from the Midwest transplants has been riding a consistent wave of recent success.
How did you originally come to work with the Austin Music Foundation?
We heard about it from our Amiga Stephanie Bergara over at the Texas Music Office. She told us we needed to talk with Alex Vallejo to get some advice and make sure we were on track. We set up an appointment and it was pretty easy.
What information or advice did you receive from AMF that stuck out to you or that you applied to the way the band operates?
Touring and sustainability. Alex taught us a lot about patience and growing a market while not overplaying it. Also how to avoid burning out.
You were named the AMF Artist of the Month in January 2015, a title that has been shared with musicians such as Gina Chavez and Quiet Company in the past. What did being named “Artist of the Month” mean to you at the time?
It’s an honor. I told Alex that we were going to come back in a year after our first meeting and check in with him. We actually did and said well we did everything you said and it worked!! Now what? Hahahaha. He seemed eager to help and give advice because he knew we would listen and were ready to get our hands dirty. I think being a part of the Austin Music Foundation means removing your ego and trusting that people who are giving the advice know the industry. You have to be willing to entertain different approaches or ideas. We’ve seen a lot of other peer bands rise up quickly and then fade away. We’re here for the long game.
You released your new EP “Primordial Soup” on May 13th. The songs feel more upbeat, is that a reflection on where the band is now emotionally compared to your self titled album?
I think so. We’re big “Kids in the Hall” fans and “Tim and Eric” fans so being ridiculous and playing with reality is always a big part. It’s hard not to be happy living in Austin. I mean we still ask big questions and think poop jokes are the best. We’ve got a new ep coming out in September 2016 already! We’re thinking of calling it the Hotel Vegas ep if Jason will be cool with that. Hahaha
What does success look like to you? Has that vision changed over time?
Since we let go of the idea of being famous we’ve written much better music and seen our fan base grow substantially.
Do you have any advice to offer a band that’s fairly new to the Austin Music scene?
I’d say be honest with yourself and be kind to one another. It’s tough, to be honest. For many bands, these are going to be fun glory years of the good old days so maybe try not taking things so seriously. Chances are you’ll look back on that outfit or song and think…..”What was I thinking?”
What are some highlights as a band that you’ve had in the last couple of years?
The black fret major grant award was huge. We needed that support to be able to get our business of the band off the ground. Another highlight was touring and recording with the bright light social hour. We learn something new every moment we spend with those guys. Just getting to see how they command an audience night after night is incredible.
For more on Migrant Kids and upcoming live performances click here!