streets of laredo

Streets of Laredo: The Kiwis of Bushwick
July 8, 2015 11:32 am

There’s something about indie folk music that makes it the perfect summer tune while you’re laying on the grass enjoying the nice weather. Streets of Laredo is a Brooklyn based band that makes you want to do exactly that while forgetting all about your problems for a few sweet moments. Their Governor’s Ball Music Festival debut officially marked their 3rd year anniversary in Brooklyn after moving from New Zealand as a three piece. “Me, my brother, his wife were a three piece for a little while and we kind of gathered members as we went on. They picked up a few more players over a couple of years to make the band “more legitimate.”

You might be thinking, why would anybody think of leaving such a beautiful country and move to Brooklyn? “I think we’ve all been in bands and we’ve all been doing music back in New Zealand. We wanted change and wanted to challenge ourselves. Throw ourselves into a big pond.” Dan continues talking about how much of a tight community it is, and that it’s a great place for musicians. “I think it kind of helps musicians to be in that culture and create relationships/friendships. LA is really different. Its cool and all but it’s not so closely knit. The music scene here in Brooklyn – there’s so many bands, so many venues, so many bands kind of doing stuff here and there. And we kind of wanted to put ourselves in the middle of it.”

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Moving somewhere halfway around the world, I expected they must have experienced some sort of culture shock or been through some struggle adjusting to the American environment. “It was really hard to order a bagel because nobody understood my accent! I would go to the deli in Bushwick and the guy just didn’t understand me. I literally just had to say bagel so many times and change the way I pronounced it. Sometimes I’ll get something a little different, but I just go along with it. You probably still can’t understand me. [laughs]”

Their performance at Governors Ball was sensational and perfect to start off my festival groove. Though they haven’t had many previous experiences of playing on such a big stage, they seemed calm, collected, and very experienced. “Man, I’ve just always wanted to play it so it was a highlight. It was a highlight for the whole band and we were so honored and humbled to be a part of the bill!”

With such talent and great musicianship, I feel as though they don’t get as much attention as they should. I go on and ask Dan about how they started getting into music. “My mom was the musician of the family who was in a women’s choir group, so she’d play guitar and sing. She would teach me how to harmonize, which was really annoying. She would pick me up after school and play choir tapes in the car and she’d make me sing along. Sometimes I’d have a friend in the car and my mom would be singing. That was embarrassing. I joined choir for a little bit but it wasn’t for me. It was a big melting pot of music. There was a lot of music around me growing up.”

Their latest EP was released in two parts last fall which outlines a narrative story of their musical journey, and their struggles of moving to a new environment. “The songs are about all of us in the process of moving here and living here for a couple of months. Then we recorded the records over in New Zealand. There’s this sort of really strong narrative adventure, missing home, and the tough emotion we used to be in especially forming a band.” Their EP cover with two dear heads fighting each other also illustrates their blood, sweat and tears. “We met a really great artist in New Zealand, Alexandra. I think she called it struggle or something, and we really liked the visual of two dears struggling. It’s that kind of narrative of struggle, triumph and heartache, and things like that really kind of buried the songs individually.”

They recently released a new song “Diamonds” so be sure to check it out!

A Few Things You Missed at Governor’s Ball Day 3
June 16, 2015 5:40 pm

Last year was the first time I’ve been to Governor’s Ball Music Festival and I had the time of my life, so this year my expectations were pretty high. I’ve been looking forward to this big day for months since I purchased my ticket in February, and it’s finally come. It’s a time where we get to watch our favorite musicians perform live, rage with our friends, eat amazing food, and exhaust ourselves from dancing way too hard.

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The weather this year wasn’t as great with some rain here and there during the first two days, but luckily the weather was on our side on Sunday. The last day of the festival had finally come and I was heartbroken that the past two days had already flown by so quickly. Despite the fact that I was exhausted from the first two days running around and constantly being on my feet, I wasn’t quite ready for this day to end.

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I started the day with Streets of Laredo, a Brooklyn based indie folk band at the big GovBallNYC stage. They have a clear cut acoustic sound that’s perfect during the daytime when people are laying out on the grass.

I went over to the other side of the park afterwards to catch Australian band DMA’s rocking out at the Big Apple Stage. I fell in love with them after listening to ‘Laced,’ which had somewhat of a nostalgic sound that reminded me of Green Day or Oasis.

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Echosmith was right after DMA’s so I ran back to the main stage. During their set, they invited two lucky fans to get up on stage and “dance like they’re in love.” ’Cool Kids’ was my ultimate summer jam last year, so I didn’t want to miss out on them. The lead singer Jamie said some pretty inspirational quotes during that song about how we should accept ourselves for who we are and who we aren’t. You go girl!

The band I’ve been looking forward to most was Tame Impala, so I decided to wait 45 minutes before their set to get a good spot for the show. Their music was very soothing with the help of some trippy graphics going on in the back. You could tell that a lot of people were pretty ‘baked’ and having a good time dancing to their vibrating tunes.

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There’s something about Big Gigantic that just makes you want to get up and dance, even if your feet are dying from all the walking. The sounds of the trumpet and saxophone kept me going, and got me excited when fire emerged out of the stage!

Hot Chip knows how to keep the crowd going, because everybody…I mean, EVERYBODY was raising their hands and dancing the night away.

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By the time Lana Del Rey and The Black Keys started playing, I was pretty exhausted and the post-concert-blues were slowly creeping up on me. Being a fan of both artists, I went back and forth to check both of them out. Even though I was physically drained, my friends and I powered through until the end of the festival. Thank you Governor’s Ball for yet another successful year – the Beasts hope to see you again next year!