Country music is in the midst of a global renaissance.
We saw Kacey Musgraves sweeping the 2019 Grammys, – including scoring Album of the Year with the sensational Golden Hour – Australia’s own Morgan Evans storming the global charts, the rise of Maren Morris, Lukas Graham, ‘Old Town Road’…the list goes on.
For rising Australian country stars The Buckleys, the timing couldn’t be better.
“It’s really exciting to see country music developing so much and gaining all these new fans as well,” Buckleys’ vocalist Sarah Buckley says. “We went to the C2C Festival last year, and there was this moment I thought, ‘Wow, this is so exciting for the genre.’
“When I was going to school, especially primary school, I was the only one who even knew country music existed and had this cool stuff going on. We love Miranda Lambert and Keith Urban, and people didn’t even know it existed. The people that did thought it was one thing, and made fun of it.
“So going to C2C Festival last year was a really special moment of seeing it grow so much. And all these young people being exposed to it and loving it. It’s so exciting because it’s such an awesome genre of music.”
“It’s so broad,” her brother Lachlan, the band’s guitarist, continues.
“There’s the umbrella of country, but there are so many avenues in it. There’s a bit for everyone, no matter what genre you’re into. There’s rap now, Americana, traditional,” Molly, who looks after mandolin and vocals, says.
“Then there’s The Buckleys. Whatever we are.” Lachlan laughs.
The trio of siblings have been making music together for as long as they can remember, taking over stages around the world with their self-described brand of “hippie country”, including esteemed festivals like Music City Roots in Nashville, CMA Fest, and Byron Bay Blues Festival.
But it wasn’t until last year that they released their debut single, ‘Daydream’. The track topped the Australian country radio charts and saw The Buckleys score their first Golden Guitar nomination in the ‘Best New Talent’ category.
Following the release of their third single ‘Money’ earlier this year, the Byron Bay group were ready to travel the world, but global lockdown has seen them get creative. For The Buckleys, the music never stops.
Earlier this month, they embarked on their first-ever virtual tour of North America, and by the end of the run, they will have played shows across Europe, Asia, South America, New Zealand, and Australia – all from the comfort of their living room.
“Like everyone, we had plans this year that had to be postponed. So this idea came about, and basically we’re going around the world, like we would have been, playing these personalised sets. And we put it on as a proper show,” Sarah says.
“Being dressed up in crazy outfits. Creating a cool environment, like an inner-city club,” Lachlan continues.
“But it’s in our home. And with our family playing as our band. We’re very lucky to have each other, and have such a big family that is very musical,” Sarah says.
In such a short amount of time, it has been incredible to watch the music industry quickly adapt to these new circumstances. From Instagram and Facebook Live festivals, to Youtube-streamed performances and events programmed inside video games – while it may look different, there is no shortage of incredible live music to enjoy.
“We love playing live and we love performing. So we definitely didn’t want it to stop under these crazy circumstances. It’s extremely important, music really has a special power,” Molly says.
“Just to see live music. I know I love, and need, to go out to see live music. It’s such an important part of what I need. And I think that’s the same for a lot of people,” Sarah continues. “We thought what a great way to bring a bit of joy and positivity into everyone else’s homes, which is what everyone really needs right now. And we play music because we want to put smiles on people’s faces. So, that’s what we’re going to keep trying to do.”
It’s crazy to think that just four years ago, the trio were pooling every bit of money they had to make their dreams of performing in Nashville come true. Now they’re winning over fans around the globe from right here in Australia.
“We’ve been playing music together forever, and we had this goal to get to Nashville from when I was about 11 years old,” Sally says, thinking back to The Buckleys’ very early days.
“We’d do anything we could. We’d busk, play live shows. And all the money went into this little tin jar. When we finally got enough, we went to Nashville,” Molly says.
“We didn’t know anyone there, and then all this crazy stuff started happening, the snowball. And here we are, touring the world as live musicians from our lounge room.” Sally says.
But don’t think for a second that The Buckleys are keeping it simple on this tour. From extravagant stage outfits, to exceptional covers of hit songs from the likes of Fleetwood Mac and Harry Styles, Sarah debuting on bass guitar, and the trio’s dad as well as their 12-year-old brother Dylan filling in on drums – this is not your regular stripped-back bedroom performance.
“We have to keep the mindset that it’s not going to be like we’ve rehearsed this a thousand times, like we would have if we had a band and we were going out on the road. It’s going to be a little bit loose. And it’s going to be fun and full of energy,” Sally says.
“We’re still working out exactly what we’re going to do, but we definitely want it to be special because it is our home country,” Molly agrees.
“It’s going to be like nothing you’ve ever seen before in your entire life,” Lachlan laughs. “Sarah said she might even do a backflip.”
“I don’t think there’s enough space. We’re in our lounge room,” Molly says.
“Actually, Dylan would do a backflip, I’m pretty sure he can,” Sarah laughs.
We might not know what they have in store for us just yet, but if The Buckleys’ exceptional track record is anything to go by, definitely expect a night of laughs, fun, and great music. From The Buckleys’ lounge room to your own.
The Buckleys will wrap up their virtual world tour with an Australian show on Thursday 30 April. Tune in via Live Nation’s Facebook page from 6pm.