The Mynabirds, the soulful pop solo project of Laura Burhenn, released Be Here Now, a fourth studio album, via Saddle Creek on Aug. 25. Laura actually released the songs on the album as three EPs prior to collecting them on one record in order to transfer the urgency of the protest music she was making at the time. The Mynabirds now are on tour, and Laura performs at DC9 on Wednesday, Sept. 20.
Laura recorded Be Here Now as a collection of nine songs written in only two weeks at the beginning of this year. Inspired by events such as the Women’s March, Laura teamed with producer Patrick Damphier in Nashville to capture the intense emotional response many people were having in reaction to policies of the new federal administration.
The resulting “emotional journalism” seeks to translate heartbreak, anger, and hope into action over initiatives like the Muslim travel ban, the pipeline protests at Standing Rock, the military transgender ban, and other matters.
Watch the official music video for “Shouting at the Dark” by The Mynabirds on YouTube:
Parklife DC had the pleasure of interviewing Laura in 2015 after the release of The Mynabirds’ third album, Lovers Know, and she shed insights into how music driven by protest has stayed with her throughout her career.
“I grew up in DC, and I lived there from 1997 until 2008. And I was there for all of those protests leading up to the Iraq war. And I was there the night Barack Obama night got elected. It was so funny the night of the election where everyone was singing ‘Na Na Na Na Hey Hey Hey Goodbye’ to George Bush,” Laura told Parklife DC.
“And you think about everyone singing these songs together,… and hearing all of these things people were bold enough to say at the time. It was a call to action — ‘Hey, wake up! This is happening all around us. We need to pay attention, and we can do something about it.'”
That idea certainly took root in the new record. Read our full interview with Laura from September 2015 online.
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