Smile Politely

C-U ex-pat Jonathan Childers featured in Rolling Stone

The annual South By Southwest (SXSW) conference and festival took place over the last two weeks in Austin, TX, where literally hundreds of bands perform in what is one of the biggest shitshows the music industry has to offer. That said, it is a fun time, though it depends on who you are.

Anyway, Jonathan Childers used to live here in Champaign-Urbana, contributing at SP at certain points (oh, that Jimmy John’s thing), before his band The Leadership moved to Nashville in 2011. Their album Frontiers was one of the best albums over the course of the last half decade, and he performs in a band called Blank Range nowadays. 

Blank Range played some shows at SXSW and Rolling Stone took the opportunity to talk about the band, Childers, and the Nashville sound.

Here’s an excerpt:

But it was Blank Range, a Nashville country-rock outfit featuring amped-up guitars with occasional steel-guitar atmospherics, plus the sort of precise vocal harmonies rarely heard in guitar-rock nowadays, that demolished the Yeti stage. Singer Jonathan Childers also earned sartorial extra credit by rocking a thrift-store cowboy look with a white-suit-and-hat ensemble that made him appear as if he just escaped from a high-school prom.

“I bought a pair of jeans off a guy at a show in Flagstaff, Arizona,” Childers said after the set. “They were acid-washed, I wanted ’em and the guy said $10. But I gave him 20 since he was taking them off.”

Pretty cool to see what Childers is doing and to have him and the band featured is great. Read the whole article, and in addition, listen to his band here.

Photo by Lorne Thomson/Redferns.

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