Morningbird on their New Album "Echoes in the Meadow" [INTERVIEW] - Festy GoNuts!

Morningbird on their New Album “Echoes in the Meadow” [INTERVIEW]

by May 15, 2024Featured, Interviews

Morningbird on their New Album “Echoes in the Meadow” [INTERVIEW]

Echoes in the Meadow is MorningBird’s DEBUT album.

MorningBird began as a duo in 2020 with Rob Wheeler (vocals, lead guitar, harmonica, mandolin, stomp box) and Jill Burkes (vocals, guitar, violin). In early 2023 the pair added Josh Palmi (vocals, upright bass) to the mix.

The trio was quick to find their sound, with haunting harmonies and melodic string arrangements.

Echoes in the Meadow is a result of the magic that happened when the trio spent 3 weeks on the road – traveling, writing, and playing gigs across the west in the Fall of 2023.  After touring they quickly made their way into the studio.

All three members are songwriters and trade off writing and singing leads throughout the album. The album includes three traditional songs (Keep Your Lamps Trimmed and Burning, Swallowtail Jig, and Dig a Hole in the Meadow) -arranged by MorningBird.  All other songs are originals by the trio.

Morningbird "Echoes in the Meadow" album cover


Contributed to by Krista Vilinskis of Elephants and Flowers Media


Tell us a bit about yourself and how you first got into music?

MorningBird is a Northern MN based acoustic trio featuring 3 singer songwriters/multi instrumentalists- myself, Jill Burkes (violin, guitar), Rob Wheeler (guitar, mandolin, harmonica, stomp box), and Josh Palmi (upright bass, guitar). We love having three writers in the group and the versatility it brings- each of us with different backgrounds and inspirations. I started playing violin at the age of 9 with a classical music background, Rob grew up learning country licks on guitar from his dad, and Josh brings the blues inspiration.

Who inspired you to make music? Anyone you admire and why?

Many inspirations—- Bob Dylan (we did attend the same Highschool- Hibbing High!), The Grateful Dead, John Prine, Towns Van Zandt, Blaze Foley, Taj Mahal, Emmylou Harris, Ray Wylie Hubbard, James McMurtry … the list goes on!

What is your creative process like? For example: what was your process/concept when writing your album Echoes in the Meadow?

Echoes in the Meadow was inspired during our tour out west last fall. During that run, we had a couple nights off and decided to boondock and settle into our surroundings. We were off grid and unplugged. The scenery was beautiful, the fall colors vivid. When the sun hit the trees, the leaves were literally glowing. We wrote most of the lyrics for Thunder together in that spot. It was fun to have that kind of down time in nature and away from the hustle of society life. We really found our sound and groove during that trip. We began recording Echoes in the Meadow last November, shortly after our return from the road.

What did you learn about yourself when writing and creating your new album?

We definitely take advantage of having 3 songwriters in MorningBird, each one of us bringing different ideas to the table. Once we started recording in the studio, we wanted to keep it raw, warm, and representative of us as a trio- with a live setup and not too much production and tracking.

What single is your favorite off your new album and why?

This is a hard question to answer, and the guys probably have their own opinions…. If I had to nail it down, My favorites are Birds and Bees because I like the theme of living free- and it’s representative of how we live on the road. But Thunder is so great because we all wrote it together- and the lyrics take me back to the magic meadow where we were and such a great time on the road.

What would you like fans to take away after seeing you perform live and or listening to your music?

Josh answered this question so perfectly at a recent interview and I’m going to quote him, “Hopefully they’re humming, singing or skipping along with one of our tunes in their head!”

What is next for Morning Bird? Any big plans?

Some great festivals coming up we’ll be playing at:
June 6- Festival Rialto (Grand Rapids MN)
July 11- Prairie Pothole Music Fest (ND)
July 26-28 Montrose Music Fest (SD)

And then our West tour run to Montana again June 24- July 13.

You can find our schedule on our website

About The Author


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