The Wild Feathers finished last year with several accomplishments under their belt. Performing over 200 shows, releasing their first full length, and even performing their single “The Ceiling” on Conan, the Wild Feathers are quickly becoming one of the most talked about bands in the scene. The band is coming to the Loft this Saturday, and Alex May spoke with Preston Wimberly about their memorable year.
Can you introduce yourself and tell us a little bit about the band?
I’m Preston. Play lead guitar, pedal steel, sing some harmonies, just American rock band out of Nashville, Tennessee, we all met, we all kind of had our different solo projects leading up to the Wild Feathers, and we all just connected really here in Austin and all moved up to Nashville, made some demos, and been on tour pretty much. Played like 250 shows last year and it’s finally starting to catch on.
You had a busy year in 2013, performing over 200 shows. Where were some of your favorite places to play?
Oh man. Gosh, so many of them. The Fillmore in San Francisco was really amazing. We were lucky enough to open up for Willie Nelson for about ten shows, so a lot of those were really incredible, really incredible. There was one, I think it was like the Maryhill Winery, there was the Botanical gardens in Boise, Idaho, a lot of outdoor amphitheaters during the summer, so it was just beautiful. Those were amazing. Also a lot of historic venues like the 9:30 Club in Washington DC. There’s so many of them, we’ve been lucky enough to play some pretty historic places. The Fillmore in San Francisco, that was pretty surreal just to see all the pictures on the wall and see all of our idols that have played there was pretty cool.
You performed at several festivals as well. What are some of the differences that you notice as a band when playing at a festival instead of a venue?
A lot more drinking. Man, we love festivals. Those are probably my favorite shows just because so many other bands and you perform for about an hour, but typically it’s a weekend event. It’s really just a big party. We played Austin City Limits, which was incredible. I lived here in Austin for a long time so going to Austin City Limits, actually being able to perform was pretty cool and just really amazing to be able to do that and . That was amazing.
Hangout Fest was incredible in Muscle Shoals I think, somewhere in Alabama, but it’s on the beach so you’re playing, you’re looking out over the ocean, that was really cool. I would say those two… well Sasquatch was really amazing in Oregon and that’s a beautiful one as well, it’s overlooking this huge. They’re all incredible. We’ve always wanted to be a festival band. Pick up some more this year, I think we’ve got a few in the works. Festivals are something we love doing, and hope to pickup a few more.
Your headlining tour this year is taking place over most of the US and even up into Canada for a few dates. For the band, what are some important things to keep in mind when doing a tour of this size?
Really, we’ve just got to pace ourselves. I mean, last year, I think it will be a little different this year because we are headlining and it’s routed a little differently. Last year we did so many shows, and a lot of them were just trying to keep up with somebody else’s schedule. This one, since we are headlining, we have a little more leeway on how it’s gonna go. Really, just gotta pace ourselves and stay healthy. It’s gonna be a long one. Enjoy some downtime right now and try and mentally prepare for a few month tour, then we’re off to Europe after that.
Staying happy and staying healthy, that’s about it.
On your website, you give fans 4 live tracks in return for signing up for your newsletter which I thought was really cool. How else do you connect with fans through social media?
We do all the Instagram and Facebook, all that kind of stuff, and it’s really, I think it’s a way for us to be a little more personal with bands. We really do all that- we take the pictures, we do Twitter and all that kind of stuff. It’s the band that’s actually doing the talking and posting the pictures, it’s us on the road, it’s not some robot over wherever, responding to people, it’s actually us. I think that gives it a little more personal, intimate feeling with the band, you know, it’s not just some automated response. Taking a picture on Instagram that nobody else would be able to see, and so I think it’s just those behind the scenes moments that we’re able to show fans the social networking, which is pretty cool, I think those are the ones people like the most. Behind the scenes pictures and footage, stuff like that, you can really connect with people.
It’s funny because it just kind of becomes the norm to us, when we’re out there in a different city every day and it kind of becomes your normal life, and you forget that it’s not a normal life. When you’re able to kind of just, I don’t know what the word is, document what you’re doing through pictures and Twitter, and all that stuff, I think it keeps people interested.
What kind of things characterize your live show?
It’s high energy man. It’s different from the record though. A lot of times we hear the live show’s better than the record, and I think that’s a good problem to have, ‘cause a lot of times, live shows, people can’t really perform what they did on an Autotuned record. Yea, it’s just a really high energy show where everybody’s, it’s real. We all actually play our instruments, we all sing harmonies, it might not be perfect, but it’s the way we sound, no Autotune, none of that stuff. It’s real, raw, rock and roll music.
Get your tickets to see the Wild Feathers, this Saturday at the Loft!