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MOLLY BURCH
with RF Shannon

Songbyrd and Union Stage Present
Downstairs, All Ages


DOORS: 7:00 PM // SHOW: 8:00 PM

$13 / $16
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Songbyrd and Union Stage Present

Tuesday August 6, 2019

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In a small-town South of Austin, Texas vocalist and songwriter Molly Burch is relaxing in her sunny country home. The 27-year-old is enjoying the calm before the storm that will kick start when her much anticipated sophomore album First Flower hits the public. The Los Angeles native has found tranquility in the outskirts of Texas, appreciating time on the front porch as cicadas sing in the distance behind her.

Burch burst onto the music scene in 2017 with her debut album Please Be Mine, a ten-track ode to unrequited romance that she wrote after studying Jazz Vocal Performance at the University of North Carolina in Asheville. Please Be Mine earned praise from critics for her smoky, effortless vocals and bleeding-heart lyrics.

“I was really blown away with how many people told me that the music has helped them through their own break-up,” she says of Please Be Mine. “I was just so moved by that. I never expected it. I was aware that people were actually listening to my music and having a positive experience, so [with the next album] I wanted to reveal my own struggles with fear and anxiety.”


After a year of touring Please Be Mine all over North America, Europe and the UK, Burch returned to Texas to decompress. All of a sudden, she was devoid of stimulation with nothing but time on her hands.

“I was scared of not being able to write a great follow-up album,” Burch admits. “I was in that state, but I had so much time that slowly I was able to get some music out of myself. I would force myself to write every day. I gave myself a regiment. Once I got a few songs, then I had the confidence to keep going.”

Burch bounced her ideas off her bandmate and boyfriend Dailey Toliver who would contribute guitar parts and orchestration suggestions. The hurricanes kept them locked at home, where they forced themselves to record demos and pump out as much material as possible. Slowly, the album took shape and First Flower became real. When it came time to record, Burch chose to work with Erik Wofford at Cacophony Recorders in Austin.

First Flower is a walk-through Burch’s most intimate thoughts. Unlike Please Be Mine, which focused on the contentious depression of heartbreak, First Flower explores broken friendships, her relationship to her sister, and more importantly, how Burch learned to fight overwhelming anxiety. Burch is a soft-spoken, careful person who shoves her nervousness away on a daily basis.

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Shane Renfro, RF Shannon songwriter, was born in the Texas Panhandle and raised in the pines of East Texas. This stark contrast of scenery would eventually come to inform the minimalist brand of hazy pastoral music that he and the band create.

What began in 2014 as an experiment in psychomagic with the intention of healing ancestral gaps (RF Shannon is the name Renfro would see on pieces of mail he would pick up after school as a child which were addressed to his late grandfather: Robert Frederick Shannon).

Feeling disconnected from a lack of stories and memory, Renfro teamed up with his brother in an attempt to “reach back towards the past”, not to dwell there, but to bring together the past and the present, to fortify a sense of purpose and guidance for the future.

“I think we carry a lot of ghosts, individually and collectively that come from a lack of connecting with the process of living and dying well. It’s like our individualistic tendencies have unintentionally orphaned us in some way...” Renfro says, “In my songs I am drawn to calling up oneiric images, symbols, unknown dream things, and wrapping them gently in a tapestry of my musical influences—namely, country and old soul music.”

RF Shannon maintains an un-namable quality to their brand of Texas music, though some attempts have served apt at times: Desert Blues, Deconstructed Americana, Western Gothic. “I’ve never really cared to figure it out,” Renfro says. “I like the idea of a Southwestern sound. That’s my haunt. We’re too country for the indie world, not country enough for the Americana crowd, too mellow for the psych scene, too Texas thunderstorm for the California sunshine.”

Hard on the heels of 2018’s ‘Trickster Blues’, RF Shannon is set to release their new album on Keeled Scales this summer.