Laura Burhenn of The Mynabirds (Photo courtesy Girlie Action)
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 Burhenn of The Mynabirds performs at Songbyrd Music House on Dec. 14, 2016.
Laura Burhenn came home to DC for the holidays.
She even brought with her a Christmas song in her visit to Songbyrd Music House on Wednesday. Of course, despite a jingly medley, that song turns out to have some bite as Laura tackles climate change, dishonest politicians, and a search for truth in “All I Want Is Truth (for Christmas),” a holiday offering from her project The Mynabirds released by Saddle Creek in 2012.
Laura Burhenn of The Mynabirds (Photo by Bliss Katherine)
A little over a year ago, DC’s own Laura Burhenn stopped by U Street Music Hall while touring the latest album from The Mynabirds, Lovers Know. When she wrapped up that tour, she found herself in a lull. Thankfully, she hit the road again and returns to DC to perform solo at Songbyrd Music House on Wednesday, Dec. 14.
Laura Burhenn plays keyboards as The Mynabirds in a performance for WFUV on July 16, 2015. (Photo courtesy WFUV)
Laura Burhenn was positively giddy to be playing a show in DC, once her hometown and still home to much of her family and friends.
Addressing the attentive crowd at U Street Music Hall on Saturday, the lead singer of The Mynabirds recalled marching in protests during her time in our city, and how such experiences shaped some of her music like the terrifically upbeat “Generals” from the second Mynabirds album of the same name.
With a laugh, Laura acknowledged she sometimes has differences of political opinion with members of her own family, and she expressed an interest in building up what they have in common rather than dwelling on what separates them.
And Laura came equipped with songs to bridge that divide, such as “All My Heart” from a new album Lovers Know, which she’s been touring to support after its release this summer. The song, the first one on the tracklisting of the new album, is a smoldering folk pop number with a R&B backbeat.
Laura Burhenn performs live at Capitol Studios. (Photo courtesy Girlie Action)
Hey, in case you missed it, DC native Laura Burhenn was kind enough to give us a cool interview about the third album from The Mynabirds earlier this month — and the Los Angeles-based Mynabirds are about to have a homecoming show at U Street Music Hall this Saturday, Sept. 26.
The new album, Lovers Know, builds upon and extends The Mynabirds’ catalog with some lovely folk pop as well as some sweeping ballads, like “Hanged Man,” a soaring if sad song that allows Laura to show off her skills on piano.
Watch “Hanged Man” performed live at Capitol Records Studios in Los Angeles on August 19, 2015:
Laura and company are in good form, setting a “Wildfire” across the country since launching their latest tour in California on Sept. 2. Whether you’re a new fan or a long-time admirer, you’re sure to love this show!
Tickets are available online.
w/ Stranger Cat and Bad Bad Hats
U Street Music Hall
Saturday, Sept. 26
Laura Burhenn of The Mynabirds (Photo by Bliss Braoudakis)
Laura Burhenn’s project The Mynabirds released their third album Lovers Know via Saddle Creek on August 7. Laura once called DC home before she migrated to Los Angeles to start The Mynabirds, and she’s returning for a hometown show at U Street Music Hall on Saturday, Sept. 26, as part of her tour in support of the new album (which starts tonight in San Diego). Parklife DC had the sincere pleasure of chatting with Laura about her new stuff, her DC roots, and subversive pop songs.
[The transcript of this interview has been edited lightly for the sake of brevity in spots.]
Laura Burhenn performs in Dallas in 2010.
Laura Burhenn, former DC native transplanted to Omaha, Neb., has done her share of traveling in recent days. The hypnotic chanteuse had been touring with her frequent collaborators Black English, opening for the Psychedelic Furs, when she got the call to open for The Pixies at the 9:30 Club Sunday night.
She flew back to DC Sunday morning, and several members of Black English supported her as her band in The Mynabirds, which also played an intimate show at the POV Lounge at the W Hotel in DC on Monday night.
At the W, The Mynabirds performed a lush 11-song set, half of which roughly consisted of new songs from an upcoming third album, Lovers Know, due on August 7 on well-regarded indie label Saddle Creek.
Monday was my first time catching a performance by Laura and The Mynabirds, and one thing immediately was clear: Laura sings with purpose. Generally her songs are concerned with devoting yourself to something 100 percent –- and when you have to do so, you fight.