Festival enthusiasts from around the globe are counting the days until the 2016 Hangout Beach, Music & Arts Festival (May 20-22). Known for a history of featuring music’s hottest names, Hangout also a chance for the crowd to discover new favorites. This year, Nashville’s Muddy Magnolias will be traveling to Gulf Shores with a goal of entertaining seasoned fans and gathering new ones.
Songwriters Jessy Wilson and Kallie North are promising a high-energy set they hope will create lyrical and emotional connections with the audience. However, the highlight of their sound is the duo’s flawless harmonic blend, wrapped in a blanket of warm soul.
The Muddy Magnolias’ story begins in Nashville and could be considered proof of destiny. Three years ago, New Yorker Wilson and Texan North traveled from their respective homes to Music City with career aspirations in the songwriting industry. Each shared a passion for their craft. Their life in Nashville would allow each to “submerge” themselves in the city’s prominent songwriting culture. Eventually, the two crossed paths in a very unique way.
“We both went to BMI for advice on our songwriting careers,” Wilson said. “I was in the office and saw a photograph from Callie, who was a photographer in the Mississippi Delta. I was drawn to it.”
The two quickly became friends. As time passed, North was brought into the studio to record her own demo. She had little to no experience in the studio. With Wilson’s experience working with artists such as John Legend, North looked to Wilson for support. As she was assisting North, Wilson was asked to lay down a vocal track for the chorus of the song being recorded. At that moment, the duo knew a social connection was not the only connection they shared.
“Jessie jumped on the recording, and our voices were blending on this song,” North said. “When they played the recording back, everyone just stopped in their tracks. It was really obvious that something special just happened.”
“It was very organic,” Wilson added. “We were meant to sing together. The first time that we ever sang together, our voices blended perfectly like we had practiced it.”
The lucky Hangout Fest crowd may get a sample of the Muddy Magnolias’ upcoming album. The duo has given the release the working title of “Broken People,” the name of one of the album’s tracks.
Wilson and North describe the song as a musical observation of the state of the world through a “super-cool, urbanesque” point of view. As for the rest of the album, it’s “very soulful and very groovy and we sing our asses off,” Wilson said.
General admission, VIP and Super VIP passes are on sale now at www.hangoutmusicfest.com.