AUSTIN (KXAN) — After severe storms canceled their performance last year, an Austin band will mount a comeback and return to the stage at the Austin City Limits Music Festival.
The band Darkbird will perform this Sunday afternoon at ACL Fest, a year after circumstances beyond their control cost them a chance to play at the signature local event. Several artists — mostly local bands — had their sets unexpectedly canceled on the first day of the festival last year because of storms.
Kelly Barnes, Darkbird’s vocalist, joined digital anchor Will DuPree Friday afternoon for an interview on KXAN Live about the chance to perform again and preparing for this event.
“This year we’re ready to just crush it,” Barnes said. “I feel like we’ve been ready for this opportunity for a while. We’re really excited to go for it this year, and we’ve known for a long time that we’re going to do it.”
She said she and the band are keeping a close watch on the forecast this time around just to make sure that that won’t interfere with the festival’s plans again.
“We’re all so nervous and excited at the same time, but it is meaningful for us,” Barnes said. “It’s definitely one that’s going to go in the books — rain or shine. Even if it’s a disaster or if we come out feeling amazing, it’s an important show. When you live here and worked hard to be a band that’s a rising star in Austin, when you finally get to do it on your own volition, it feels pretty great.”
The Darkbird performance will happen Sunday from 1:15-2:00 p.m. at the festival’s BMI stage.
Barnes said the band recently released a new album called “Ballad of a Junebug” as well as rolled out new merchandise for fans. A new single is also planned to come out next month, so Barnes said Darkbird is perhaps in a better spot now to be performing at ACL.
“I tried to tell my band at one point, maybe it’s better that we didn’t play last year because I think we’re better now,” Barnes said. “That’s an easy thing to say. I don’t know that it’s like an everything-happens-for-a-reason scenario, but maybe it is.”
Crowds will experience ideal weather conditions to be outside enjoying live music during the first ACL weekend. According to the festival forecast, the first day will be the warmest with temperatures warming to around 90° during the middle of the afternoon. The wind will cooperate, too, as a gentle breeze out of the north will prevail.
Saturday will have similar conditions, with the start of the festival in the mid-80s followed by an afternoon around 90. A weak cold front will make a run at Central Texas on Saturday but will only have minor effects. The morning will be a little cooler Sunday, with the start of the festival at 11 a.m. holding a temperature in the low 80s and with afternoon highs warming to the upper 80s.
Check out in-depth coverage of both weekends of the Austin City Limits Music Festival on the KXAN page dedicated to the event. Please send us your photos and videos, too, from your ACL experience by emailing ReportIt@kxan.com.