As the Avett Brothers release their 10th studio album, Closer Than Together,” on Friday, they’ve come a long way from the band that dropped its debut LP, Country Was,” in 2002. It’s not long, though, before he realizes that Death — played by Seth Avett, his brother and co-founder of folk-rock band the Avett Brothers — is riding shotgun. As it turns out, that wide-open road of possibility is a narrower lane than it seemed, and fate is waiting to take him in some unexpected directions.
The Avett Brothers begin their political commentaries on track three with the six-minute mistake of a song, We Americans.” They open it up by establishing their love and patriotism for the U.S, and then continue with a recounting of the mistakes of the country’s past. However, their protests remain about as shallow as a local community kiddie pool, boiling down to the fact that slavery is bad. It certainly doesn’t help that the song is incredibly wordy, vague and not exactly pleasant to listen to.
The Avett Brothers and Cheerwine’s Legendary Giveback” events have raised more than $175,000 for charities to date, and this year’s new beneficiaries are The Love Kitchen, The Empty Stocking Fund and Caps for Kids.
Although siblings Scott (vocals, banjo) and Seth (vocals, guitar) began making music together as children, their group’s genesis began when they were members of Nemo , a rock band that gigged regularly in Greenville, North Carolina. Looking for another outlet for their musical ideas, the Avetts began getting together with like-minded friends (most notably Nemo guitarist John Twomey ) on Tuesdays for acoustic guitar pulls, where they’d share a few drinks and swap songs. As time passed, the weekly get-together (which was called “the Back Door Project” or ” Nemo Downstairs”) became a semi-public event, with the pickers busking for the enjoyment of passers-by, and Seth and Scott decided the new acoustic music they were making was as fun and satisfying as their rock band.
The Avett Brothers band holds a unique place in the area of folk rock. The four permanent members are the two Avett brothers, Seth and Scott, and two other top performers, Joe Kwon and Bob Crawford. The group is known for great fan interaction at its live performances, but its primary draw is the interesting style that it has developed as the band has branched out much further than a typical rock style. Since 2000, The Avett Brothers has produced nine studio albums in addition to holding numerous live concerts. The band’s top singles include “I and Love and You,” which hit No. 7 on the US charts, and more recently “Ain’t No Man,” which was its first song to hit No. 1 on the Billboard charts.
See The Avett Brothers discography for a list of all albums released by the band. See List of songs by The Avett Brothers for a list of all original songs (released and unreleased) by the band.
With a lot of the songs that I write, before I bring him to the table, before Scott hears them, if they’re in full or an idea — especially if they’re in full — I come to him with a song pretty much fleshed out.
The Avett Brothers were great but the ushers at the Barclays were unprofessional and a distraction. They were constantly talking over the performance and making fun of the music.
In an interview with Rolling Stone , who premiered the song, the group’s Scott Avett explains that “High Steppin'” began as a traditional country tune, and gradually morphed into something more thematically complex. In its finished state, the track dances between a carefree, colorful beat and dark subject matter – represented, in its music video, by a sunny ride through the countryside with an anthropomorphized Death character riding shotgun.
Seated behind the wheel of an antique Ford truck in a red rhinestone suit, Scott Avett stretches his arms across the cab and out the window, singing high and proud about being a high steppin’, high bettin’, love givin’, love gettin’” kind of man.
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The Avett Brothers are an American folk rock band. They sit down with the Armchair Expert to discuss the experience of being in a family band, the balance between touring and home life and the connection between artist and audience. The two talk about how they came to love music and Dax describes the magic of an Avett Brothers’ concert. They discuss the male right of passage, their relationship to religion and the feeling of universal unity.
The Avett Brothers consist of Scott and Seth Avett, Bob Crawford and Joe Kwon. They count among their influences Hall & Oats, David Lee Roth and El DeBarge.
The sound of The Avett Brothers incorporates quite a mix of different styles, including indie, bluegrass, folk rock and what is commonly known as Americana. Its songs are sometimes classified as pop, folk, rock or even blues. The band’s music ranges from hauntingly soulful to highly upbeat. Concerts can last for as long as two hours with sometimes more than 20 songs in the setlist. Listeners also describe the lead vocals as incredible, partnered with stunningly loud and heartfelt accompaniment.
The Avett Brothers are almost always on tour. The relentless travelers, currently a six-piece troupe, headline festivals and amphitheaters, as well as concert halls and theaters, all over the country. So when I call up Seth Avett this summer to talk about their new album, Closer Than Together (out now on Republic Records), I’m not surprised to find him far from the forests and dirt roads of his native North Carolina He’s in Arizona, where it basically feels like the surface of the sun when you step outside,” he says. 110 degrees. It’s not anywhere near that warm here in Atlanta, but Seth, being the personable fellow he is, expresses understanding for those of us suffering the extreme” Georgia temps.
Three of the songs on “Closer Than Together” could easily be seen as editorials on America: “Bang Bang” pushes back against the normalization of excessive violence in American culture; “New Woman’s World” imagines women recovering a planet wrecked by men; “We Americans” confronts the nation’s ugliest moments in history through song-as-essay.
It was just a moment of me being horrified by a movie preview and just being so aware of how casual murder is presented. I’ve enjoyed action movies and all that, but I was exhausted with it and nauseated by it. It just seemed very real to me that there’s a lot of ways to poison yourself. There’s a lot out there in the world that has been filmed that is just poison for the eyes. It’s just no good. At some point I saw the Mr. Rogers documentary, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, and he supported a lot of what that song comments on. It reminded me how right of a sentiment it is. The reality is some people are more susceptible to this nonsense than other people. And we really don’t need video games where people are blowing each other’s heads off. We just don’t need it. It’s garbage. It’s not helpful. So I just had a moment of needing to say that.
Get to know the Steppers in ‘High Steppin’ – the dancers in the new Avett Brothers’ video Purple Charlotte Steppers Club – the dancers in who appear in the new Avett Brothers video – is an organization that brings dance instruction and social events to North Carolina and around the country. Demond Carter, founder of Purple Charlotte Steppers Club, shares the story.
The songs are honest: just chords with real voices singing real melodies. But, the heart and the energy with which they are sung, is really why people are talking, and why so many sing along.
Although siblings Scott (vocals, banjo) and Seth (vocals, guitar) began making music together as children, their group’s genesis began when they were members of Nemo, a rock band that gigged regularly in Greenville, North Carolina. Looking for another outlet for their musical ideas, the Avetts began getting together with like-minded friends (most notably Nemo guitarist John Twomey) on Tuesdays for acoustic guitar pulls, where they’d share a few drinks and swap songs. As time passed, the weekly get-together (which was called “the Back Door Project” or “Nemo Downstairs”) became a semi-public event, with the pickers busking for the enjoyment of passers-by, and Seth and Scott decided the new acoustic music they were making was as fun and satisfying as their rock band.
On Wednesday, The Avett Brothers announced a forthcoming album, Closer Than Together, with a new single, “High Steppin’,” and its accompanying video. Closer Than Together will be the Avetts’ tenth studio album and their first full-length since 2016’s True Sadness. In May of this year, the Avetts released the song “Sun, Flood, or Drought,” which appeared in the documentary film, The Biggest Little Farm.
That’s one of two songs that we actually recorded at my home in North Carolina , which I’m super excited about ‘cause that’s never happened. We always make the demos either at my house or wherever, work somewhere close by, and then we’d go record them again. But those two, the ones we made at my home, are the ones on the record, so I’m super excited about that. But Tell The Truth” is largely coming from Scott’s perspective. It’s one of these songs where one phrase is like the thesis statement. I think it’s a powerful concept that if you will just tell the truth to yourself, the rest will fall in place. And then aesthetically, we love the band Dr. Dog. While we were making it, Scott and I were talking about how great all their vocals are. We listened to Dr. Dog, listening to all these layers—they’re just so awesome. Like, We need to try to make layers like Dr. Dog’s.” That’s kinda why the song sounds like it does.
On a Monday afternoon, the band relaxes backstage at The Tonight Show. Dexter actress Jennifer Carpenter arrives in a brown mesh top and black heels, sharing a long embrace with Seth before they disappear down a hallway. In June, the Avetts were propelled into the world of TMZ and Perez Hilton when Seth announced he was separating from his wife, Susan. Gossip sites claimed that he’d been dating Carpenter since 2011. Fans viciously lashed out at the band (He left the family values of NC for the money and fame of L.A.,” wrote one commenter), perhaps due to the wholesomeness of some of their songs – their fan-favorite ballad January Wedding” is an ode to Seth’s former marriage.