This September, the inaugural Great Eastern Music Festival, presented by the Montauk Historical Society, at the world-famous Montauk Lighthouse will feature an impressive lineup that includes The Dustbowl Revival, Sarah Jarosz, Seldom Scene, Sam Outlaw, Tall Tall Trees, Miles To Dayton, Eastbound Freight, Buddy Merriam & Back Roads, Gravity Jazz Quartet, Gene Casey, M2D Trio, Pluck & Rail, Bill Scorzari, He-Bird, She-Bird, Kirsten Maxwell, and Hank Stone.
We recently caught up with Liz Beebe, lead singer of The Dustbowl Revival, an eight-piece Los Angeles-based ensemble whose performance Rolling Stone said “was so fun I went back to see them again the next day,” about the Festival, Dustbowl’s latest album, and more.
“We’re thrilled to see everyone in Montauk,” she shared.
Will this be your first time in Montauk?
The Festival is taking place at the Montauk Lighthouse. Have you ever played at such a unique location?
LB: We’ve definitely never played there before, so we’re looking forward to that. We’ve played at other unique venues before, but I don’t think we’ve ever played at anything as unique as a lighthouse.
The Dustbowl Revival’s new self-titled effort was released in June and the band debuted the video for If You Could See Me Now earlier this month. Tell me a little bit about the video’s concept.
LB: The video is sort of a reflection of the meaning of the song, which is about self-growth. The idea of the young girl in the video who is a dancer and a fighter grows up to be a woman who is doing similar actions. The idea is that we’re seeing her grow and be self-sufficient and a female warrior in the video.
How did the band members meet?
LB: Zach actually posted a Craigslist ad nearly ten years ago. That’s how he got most of the original players – Daniel, our mandolin player came from that, Matt, our trumpet player came from that. I believe the former lady singer came from that ad. The rest of the musicians were brought on by those initial members. James and myself are sort of the newer members and joined in the last four years, right around when Dustbowl started touring full time. We got the sweet end of the deal.
What was the recording process like for your latest album?
LB: We were lucky enough to work with Mr. Ted Hutt who did the Grammy-winning album that Old Crow Medicine Show put out. He very graciously gave up a lot of his time to come to the studio with us while we were rehearsing and basically listened to all of the songs we were considering and helped us weed out all of the ones that didn’t have as much substance to them or had too much emotional stuff. Then we took them all apart to see what was resonating with people and what wasn’t resonating with people. This was the first album that we’ve put out so far that has really been a collaborative effort of all eight of us. So that was really exciting and we’re stoked it’s finally out and we can share it with people.
The Great Eastern Music Festival will be held on Saturday, September 16. Gates open at 9 .m. and the festival starts at 10 a.m. Tickets are $65 for general admission.
Montauk Lighthouse is located at 2000 New York 27 in Montauk. For tickets, visit greateasternmusicfestival.com. For more information about The Dustbowl Revival, visit www.dustbowlrevival.com.