Photo/ David McClister
Delta Rae fans can expect cuts from the band’s latest album, “The Blackbird Sessions,” along with select covers and audience favorites.
Band: Delta Rae
Date: Saturday, April 14, 9:30 p.m.
Venue: Hargrove Stage at O’Daly’s Irish Pub, 564 Dauphin St., www.odalysirishpub.com
Delta Rae’s addition to SouthSounds has created a buzz of anticipation. According to vocalist Elizabeth Hopkins, during a recent run of performances in the United Kingdom, the group discovered its fan base extends internationally. Hopkins said the “love and enthusiasm” they experienced overseas was overwhelming. She was especially taken by fans who were willing to stand in the cold and sing along with the band. She says the meet-and-greets were some of the best parts of touring in the U.K.
“[The U.K. fans] were really sweet and the fact that there was any kind of line of people waiting to meet us really blew our minds,” Hopkins said. “We were one of the up-and-coming acts at the festival and had only been to the U.K. once. So we were very grateful that people had been over there listening to our music over the past few years and were excited to meet us.”
Delta Rae’s success overseas should not come as a surprise. This talented group from North Carolina has crafted a style appealing to a wide array of tastes, landing listings on the lineups of festivals from Lollapalooza to the upcoming Outlaw Music Festival.
Delta Rae has built its unique sounds on a smooth, beautiful bed of impeccable harmonies. From there the group knows no limits, expertly blending a heavy serving of traditional country with indie, folk, blues or whatever sound fits their fancy.
“At the end of the day, it’s about making music that makes you feel something,” Hopkins explains. “As a music listener myself, I usually don’t scroll through my music and say, ‘OK, today, I want to listen to folk music. Now, I want to listen to jazz music.’ It’s just a feeling thing with music that makes you feel good or emotionally moved in some way. We’ve been really grateful to see the diversity of fans that we’ve collected over the years.”
Delta Rae’s most recent offering is “The Blackbird Sessions,” released at the end of 2017. Hopkins says an acoustic holiday music tour has become a yearly tradition for the group, one they were unable to celebrate last year. With this in mind, the group reserved time at Blackbird Studios in Nashville to record its rendition of “Silent Night.” Delta Rae made fast work of it and had studio time remaining. They used it to “re-approach” its new single, “No Peace in Quiet,” as well as a take on The Beatles’ classic “Blackbird” and a version of The Eagles’ “Seven Bridges Road.”
“[‘Seven Bridges Road’] was the next natural fit, because it was another song that we really know and love,” Hopkins says. “In our opinion, it’s one of the best harmony songs that were ever recorded. We, as a harmony band, wanted to pay homage to The Eagles as one of the groups who has most influenced us. We integrate four-part harmony into everything we do. It’s part of our sound.”
Delta Rae’s SouthSounds audience will experience new music from the group – visions of the South and its complex history as well as socially conscious tracks that demand attention. “Hands Dirty” deals with the need for equal pay regardless of gender. “Only in America” is a tribute to the nation they love.
The band also will perform “I Moved South,” which is a biographical tale of their relocation to North Carolina. Not matter where the setlist meanders, Delta Rae will still maintain its mesmerizing vocal harmonies as well as its fondness for the locals.
“We love Alabama,” Hopkins says. “We have always had such a great time there. We’ve played in Mobile at Soul Kitchen and in Birmingham. We’ve also played in Gulf Shores. We’re really looking forward to coming back. I’m always really excited to get back there. There’s so much soul and history bubbling up through the cracks in Alabama.”