The Recording Academy Texas Chapter recently played host for GRAMMYs On The Road at the Austin City Limits Music Festival, held Oct. 12–14 at Zilker Park in Austin, Texas. The Chapter conducted exclusive backstage interviews with artists performing at the festival, including GRAMMY-winning rock duo the Black Keys and singer/songwriter Noah Gundersen.
The Black Keys' guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney discussed early music education, their recording process and winning a GRAMMY Award, among other topics.
"We weren't expecting it at all," said Carney on winning a GRAMMY. "We'd been making music for almost 10 years at that point [and] to finally get some recognition on that level, which we never thought would ever happen, was kind of mind-blowing."
Combining elements of garage rock with traditional blues/rock, the Black Keys released their debut album, The Big Come Up, in 2002. Following 2003's Thickfreakness, which was recorded in just 14 hours, and 2004's Rubber Factory, they signed with Nonesuch Records and released Magic Potion (2006) and Attack & Release (2008), the latter of which was produced by GRAMMY winner Danger Mouse and peaked at No. 14 on the Billboard 200. The Black Keys teamed again with Danger Mouse for 2010's Brothers, which earned two GRAMMY Awards for Best Alternative Music Album and Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal for "Tighten Up." Their latest album, 2011's El Camino was again produced by Danger Mouse and climbed to No. 2 on the Billboard 200. The duo has tour dates scheduled in Australia, the UK and United States through March 2013.
Gundersen discussed his latest album, 2011's Family, collaborating with his sister, Abby Gundersen, and music education, among other topics.
"It's always been a big part of my life, whether I've liked it or not," said Gundersen on family. "But I've come to learn over the last several years that it is one of the few constants in my life, and it does shape me."
Raised in Seattle, Noah and Abby Gundersen have been playing music together since age 15 and 12, respectively. In 2008 Noah Gundersen released the EP Brand New World, followed by 2009's Saints & Liars. On Family, Gundersen pays homage to the people who have shaped his life. Featuring Abby Gundersen on vocals and violin, the EP has seven tracks, including "David," which Gundersen describes as being about "who I want to be, while realizing who I am." In 2012 he released "He Got Away" with the Forest Rangers, which was featured on the TV series "Sons Of Anarchy." Gundersen is currently on tour throughout the United States, with select dates scheduled through mid-November.