So last year I posted on a Michael Runion
show that I attended back in 2006. As I mentioned at the time, I managed to screw up the recording and came away with only a couple of songs - though I'm glad I got that. So since then I've been waiting, very very patiently, for Michael to come back through Texas.
To be honest, it wasn't very hard. I can safely say that Runion is a fantastic singer-songwriter, just one of those guys who can sit down with an acoustic and dazzle you with gentle strumming, and lyrics that pull you into a 4 minute story, then get on stage with his band and tear it up, rock and roll style.
So good news for all of us, Runion and his band, the Royal Family, went out on tour wandering around the country opening for Conor Oberst. After their run with the Bright Eyes front man, they did a handful of headlining shows as they headed home to Los Angeles, and like all bands should, their last show was in Texas (Austin, that is).
Seeing that I've been harassing him for the last few years, Runion was kind enough to play an exclusive little acoustic show for us, on the streets of Austin, before their headlining gig at Lamberts (a fantastic BBQ joint on 2nd Street).
It was a brutal 103 degrees outside, yet it didn't seem to faze Runion while he played through a 5 song set, that featured 3 brand new tracks and 2 songs from his last record, Our Time Will Come. It was a fantastic set, and I've barely listened to anything else since we got back from Austin. There's just something special about these street recordings. They seem honest. Just a guy playing his guitar and singing songs about his life while buses buzz past, construction workers clang, and birds chirp melodies in the background.
It's always interesting to me how I can love certain songs on a record, and other songs live. I've had "Our Time Will Come" since it came out last year - and my favorite song has consistently been the title track. After the acoustic set my favorite song is definitely "Where I'm From". I always enjoyed it on the record, but something about this particular rendition really grabbed me. I think it's just a lot more tonally dynamic as Runion's voice rises and falls, accenting the story about how he wanders from city to city, meeting women and the common question they all ask him.
So, with that said, quit reading and check out the tracks! I was lucky enough to get to record the full band session that evening, and some or all of those tracks will be coming at a later time. As I mentioned earlier, both variants of the Michael Runion experience are fantastic - and it was especially cool to get to see several of these acoustic tracks transformed into pure rock later the same day... More to come.
Oh, and check out Michael Runion's MySpace
for studio track goodness.
This is the third "On The Streets Of..." recording session for Lullabyes, where we capture great bands playing stripped down acoustic sets on random streets in Texas. You can also check out Bishop Allen back in 2007
and The Whispertown 2000 earlier this year at SXSW
. Live MP3 MP3s:
No FriendKeep It To YourselfBack and ForthOur Time Will ComeWhere I'm From
Labels: austin, from the streets of, live mp3s, michael runion, soundboard mp3s