The Wild Feathers kicked off their 2019 Neon Frontier tour on the Texas Lottery Plaza at Toyota Music Factory in Irving, Texas on Thursday, April 11. With singer/songwriter Lauren Jenkins as their opener, the group showed their inaugural audience a great time.
Lauren Jenkins, a promising up and comer in the country music industry, gave one hell of a show considering her circumstances. Jenkins arrived in Texas with no clothing and no toiletries thanks to the unfortunate soul who stole her backpack while she was traveling. After relying on the kindness of strangers and the good folks at 511 Tactical in Arlington, Jenkins was ready to hit the stage. Though the audience hadn’t fully filled out, Jenkins gave a brilliant acoustic performance of some of her originals and covers as the sun set on the Factory. Half way through her set, a cable came loose, leaving Jenkins without the support of her guitar. Without missing a single beat, Jenkins broke into an a Capella rendition of “River”, originally recorded by Leon Bridges. This moment, which I’m sure felt like a lifetime’s worth of panic for Jenkins, is why live music is so cool. She could’ve walked off the stage or stopped singing until it was fixed. Instead, like a true road warrior, she stood there and sang her heart out to keep the crowd entertained while the road crew did their job. What she did, both before she hit the stage and was frantically shopping for new clothes in which to perform and during her performance, spoke volumes for her personality as an entertainer: she understands the show must go on despite any and all challenges, and she worked her tail end off to… well, have it covered (literally) and cover for the equipment malfunction (figuratively). That, topped by a brilliant performance of Stevie Nick’s “Dreams”, puts Jenkins at the top of our list of new favorite performers. Way to go, lady. We can’t wait to cover YOUR first headline show.
From the moment the Wild Feathers stepped on stage their energy was at maximum level. By the end of their first song (“American”) the audience were on their feet dancing, where they remained for the rest of the evening. And I’ll say this: many artists can record. Few can sound as good live as they do in the studio. Taylor Burns has an explosive energy on stage, bringing each song to life with every fiber of his being. The wild feathers have fallen naturally into the roles they are inherently meant to take and it shows in their live performances. The magic of each band member having walked their own path before they came together is that they’ve found their greatest individual strengths on their own and use those strengths to complement one another almost perfectly in their performances. Special notice must go to the harmony work this group does. It is obvious how hard they’ve worked to make their harmonies near seamless over the last several years writing and performing together.
With an energetic and engaged crowd, the Wild Feathers played for almost an hour and a half and even included a surprise performance by Burns’ young nieces to finish out the show (pretty much the definition of a home town show = having your baby nieces walk on stage). It is clear from both their performance and the audience that the boys have a dedicated group of fans who delight in seeing them perform. What’s better (especially for them) is that they’re energetic enough, catchy enough, and have such amazing musical integrity that anyone who happens to find themselves at a show and may not be familiar with their music will be immediately become a fan.
Congrats on the first show of your tour, Wild Feathers! We can’t wait to see where this year and this tour take you!