A friend once pulled me into his smokey car, started Brightblack Morning Light‘s self-titled album and told me, “this is going to be your favorite band”. I was immediately taken in by their resonating harmonies and blues mantras that spiraled away into infinity. The more I delved, the more I loved their music. Working my way backwards, I found 2004’s Ala.Cali.Tucky and their beautiful origins as Rainywood. I suppose my friend knew me best. Their music stands alone in its lyricism, pace, and style.
This past weekend, I got a chance to see Brightblack Morning Light in Austin, Texas. It was such a wonderful experience to finally see them perform. Motion To Rejoin came alive alongside tracks from Brightblack Morning Light. Their performances of “Everybody Daylight”, “Summer Hoof”, and “Oppressions Each” were my absolute favorites from the night, but every song was equally amazing.
Just prior to the show, I was thoroughly enraptured by a screening of Bill Daniel’s documentary Who Is Bozo Texino?
Who is Bozo Texino? chronicles the search for the source of a ubiquitous and mythic rail graffiti– a simple sketch of a character with an infinity-shaped hat and the scrawled moniker, “Bozo Texino”– a drawing seen on railcars for over 80 years. Daniel’s gritty black and white film uncovers a secret society and it’s underground universe of hobo and railworker graffiti, and includes interviews with legendary boxcar artists, Coaltrain, Herby, Colossus of Roads, and The Rambler. Shooting over a 16-year period, Daniel rode freights across the West carrying a Super-8 sound camera and a 16mm Bolex. During his quest he discovered the roots of a folkloric tradition that has gone mostly unnoticed for a century. Taking inspiration from Beat artists Robert Frank and Jack Kerouac, the film functions as both a sub-cultural documentary and a stylized fable on wanderlust and outsider identity.