Wisconsin's Blessed Feathers released their debut EP Peaceful Beasts In An Ocean Of Weeds this fall to critical acclaim. The AV Club said, "The vocal interplay between Berube and Jacquelyn Beaupre is the focus..their harmonies are beautiful, perfectly capturing the joy and pain of the American struggle," while Milwaukee Magazine raved, "Blessed Feathers has created an album that is, above all, wonderfully easy on the ears." Blessed Feathers just announced a winter tour in support of the EP, which includes dates with Mount Moriah, Young Buffalo and a stop at this year's SXSW Music Festival. In anticipation of the upcoming tour the band has a released an new track from the EP, "Winter Sister" which is available to share via SoundCloud and also posted a video for a brand new track "Salvation Army" which was recorded live at Milwaukee's Turner Hall Ballroom.
Blessed Feathers is comprised of musical and romantic partners Donivan Berube and Jacquelyn Beaupre. Berube hails from Lakeland, Florida and was raised as a Jehovah's Witness. He taught himself guitar and grew up recording songs in his bedroom. He left home at 17, disassociating himself from the church and drove 36 hours from the Florida sunshine into a Wisconsin blizzard. Berube found work in a restaurant in West Bend where he met Jacquelyn Beaupre, who is now his partner in both music and life.
Blessed Feathers arose from Beaupre's solo material, which he produced while living on a farm in Farmington, WI in 2009. The pair played their first show at a West Bend bookstore in April of 2010 at a meeting of the Fireside Books' Poetry Club, building a reputation in the surrounding towns. In mid-2012, Blessed Feathers selected their best five tracks to record with producer Kevin McMahon (Real Estate, Titus Andronicus, The Walkmen) at his studio in New Paltz, NY. The songs, which comprise the band's debut EP, Peaceful Beasts In An Ocean Of Weeds, encapsulate Berube and Beaupre's collective experiences, aiming to capture both their emotional and geographic journeys.
The pair contributed numerous instruments to the album, including banjo, flute, vibraphone and various percussion. But, ultimately, McMahon and the band focused on maintaining the earthy, homespun sound that Blessed Feathers has cultivated over the past few years. The EP resonates with a woodsy vibe, urging the listener into an intimate, skillfully crafted sonic space-aided in many ways by McMahon's recording style.
Berube and Beaupre still work in the same restaurant where they first met, spending their time, as Berube says, "cooking dinner for strangers." They share a 10-year-old cell phone and can only access the Internet from their local library. They are interested in capturing all their experiences, not just the ones they've found in West Bend. Their music is optimistic, gleaming with a sense of appreciation for the things around them and the things within them. The pair likes to say that Beaupre plays everything and Berube plays everything else, but a better way to put it is that together, they can play anything.
Blessed Feathers Upcoming Shows
02.28 - Minneapolis @ 7th Street Entry #
03.01 - Madison @ Frequency #
03.02 - Milwaukee @ Cactus Club #
03.03 - Bloomington, IN @ The Bishop #
03.05 - Louisville, KY @ Zanzabar #
03.06 - Asheville, NC @ Emerald Lounge #
03.07 - Charlotte, NC @ Snug Harbor #
03.09 - Savannah, GA @ Savannah Stopover Festival
03.13 - Austin, TX @ SXSW
03.18 - Chicago, IL @ Schubas *
03.19 - Detroit @ Magic Stick *
03.20 - Toronto, ON @ The Drake Hotel *
03.21 - Montreal, QB @ Casa del Popolo *
03.22 - Boston, MA Cafe 939 *
03.23 - New Haven @ Cafe Nine *
03.25 - New York City @ Mercury Lounge *
03.26 - Philadelphia @ Johnny Brenda's *
03.27 - Washington, DC @ DC9 *
# Young Buffalo
* with Mount Moriah
The season 7 premiere guests featured some cast members we haven't seen much of for a while.
This year's Rotterdam event was definitely one to remember.