Two distinctly different but equally impressive local transplants, both with genre and era defying sounds honed from years of nomadic living and artistic evolution, Australian, eclectic, Americana singer-songwriter Ruby Boots and Mississippi born, genre-bending rocker Indianola are set to play a special, intimate show at The High Watt tonight, May 2. Though both now Nashville based, it’s not often we get to see either of these artists on a bill and setting where they get to play a full set in a small club, so whether you’re new to their music or already a fan, you’ll certainly want to snag tickets right here, then read on for more about the show!
Though a fixture in the Nashville music scene since 2016, singer-songwriter Ruby Boots was born Bex Chilcott and raised in Perth, Australia, where she left home as a teen to find a different path in life, subsequently spending several years working on pearl farms on the coast of western Australia. It was during her time at sea that Chilcott, encouraged by a friend and coworker with a guitar, first began to sing and taught herself to play, beginning to write her own songs for the first time, and setting down a path towards making music. Though inspired by a wide range of classic and contemporary rock, indie, punk, pop, grunge, doo wop, southern, and singer-songwriter, as well as her worldly experiences from years of travels and nomadic living, all of which can be felt in her sound and style, Ruby Boots is most directly indebted to the sounds of American folk singers, alt country, and Americana, all of which drew her attention to Nashville early on, intensified by a visit after Bonnaroo 2012. After years of writing and recording, releasing singles and EPs, and earning a respectable amount of buzz down under, Ruby released her first full-length, Solitude, in 2015, leading to critical praise and increased worldwide performances, sharing the stage with the likes of Kris Kristofferson, Justin Townes Earle, Shovels & Rope, Nikki Lane, and more. Upon formally moving to Music City in 2016, it was Lane who introduced Ruby to The Texas Gentlemen’s Beau Bedford, who invited the singer to Dallas to record her sophomore effort at the group’s famed Modern Electric studio. The result, last year’s Don’t Talk About It, arrived through Bloodshot Records, and is without a doubt Ruby Boots’ most focused, impressive, eclectic, and most wholly representative work to date. While she’s now a local and often plays out around town, Ruby frequently performs in more group setting events, festivals, and the like, so getting to see her headline a bill in an intimate club is an extra cool treat. Don’t miss it!
Like Ruby Boots, Owen Beverly, the creative force behind eclectic project Indianola, moved to Music City in 2016, and, also like Ruby, Beverly spent many years prior traveling around, bouncing between cities, and honing his craft, fusing influences, and amassing a trove of life experiences that would ultimately fuel his style and sound. Raised in Mississippi, not far from the Delta town of Indianola from which the project borrows its name, Owen cut his teeth on mid-century Delta blues, before moving up to ’60s psychedelia and ’70s glam rock, and ultimately more contemporary indie and pop, all of which helped inform his current fusion of retro yet modern, wistful, and timeless rock. After time spent living in Charleston and then New York City, years of releasing solo music, performing with his band French Camp, and touring as a hired player for Danish indie pop group Oh Land, Owen settled on a new moniker, readjusted his sound, relocated to Nashville, and released Indianola’s debut EP, Zero, in 2016, produced by Shovel & Rope’s Rope’s Michael Trent. A perfect bridge between his early musical influence and more recent musical ambitions, the record’s Delta noir sound pulled from his deep southern roots and thoughtful, adventurous broader stylings, earning Indianola critical praise and impressive tour dates and festival stops. With his upcoming debut full-length, Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye, due out May 10, however, Beverly has really settled into Indianola’s more rock oriented sound, still harboring genre and decade spanning ambition, but a more confident and cohesive distillation of Owen’s artistic journey. Be sure to show up early!
Ruby Boots and Indianola will perform Thursday, May 2 at The High Watt. The show is 18+, begins at 8 p.m. (doors at 7 p.m.), and tickets are available to purchase for $15.