Free At Noon Flashback: Muddy Magnolias defy the afternoon with soulful midday set

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Muddy Magnolias perform live at WXPN's Free At Noon Concert | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN
Muddy Magnolias perform live at WXPN’s Free At Noon Concert | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

One powerful, acrobatic voice is great. Two, however, is a lot better; that’s just simple math. Muddy Magnolias, the singer/songwriter project of Nashvillians Jessy Wilson and Kallie North, is a prime example of this, and their debut album Broken People is the proof. It’s a soulful eleven track set, and it sounds just as good, if not better, live.

After kicking things off with the somber, intense spiritual “Down By The Riverside”, they launched into the album’s fiery title track with its rousing hook of “Do you go to bed hungry?”. Wilson and North began their relationship as drinking buddies, and that chemistry translates onstage, especially on playful, feel-good tracks like conscious single “Brother What Happened?” and lively Doobie Brothers cover “Alright”.

Muddy Magnolias perform live at WXPN's Free At Noon Concert | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN
Muddy Magnolias perform live at WXPN’s Free At Noon Concert | photo by Tiana Timmerberg for WXPN

Halfway into the set, they dedicated one to the independent woman in the audience for the slow, sensual, “I Need A Man”, a track that benefited greatly from its sparse, grooving bass line and subtle keys.Then, it was down to just Wilson, North, and the keyboard player for the intimate “Train”. The track deals with the aftermath of self-destructive tendencies, and it was by far the most emotional, arresting moment of the afternoon. The rest of the band returned for the sentimental “Why Don’t You Stay?”, but they saved the best for last with their new single “Devil’s Teeth”, The song skews more heavily towards modern pop than anything else on the record, and it was the perfect closer to an already impressive afternoon of music.

It was over all too quickly, but even as I write this, I can still hear their immaculate harmonies ringing in my ears. If you’re jealous, you don’t have to be, because you can check out Broken People now over at Muddy Magnolia’s website.

Set List: 

Down By The Riverside
Broken People
Alright
Brother, What Happened
I Need A Man
Train
Why Don’t You Stay
Devil’s Teeth

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