Los Angeles native Robert Francis, who released his first album, One By One, to critical acclaim when he was just 19, will be playing a showcase with indie rock legends Broken Social Scene at SXSW this year. This showcase will also include sets by Band of Horses, The Besnard Lakes and Drive-By Truckers, among others. What a lineup!
I first heard Robert last year when I came across the song Alice on one of the blogs I read. I loved the song and it would have been included on my best songs of the year if I hadn’t realized it was released in 2007. The song sounds like it could have been released in ’67 instead of ’07. It is a great folk song in the style of early Dylan.
Francis, now 22 years old, was given his first guitar by the legendary Ry Cooder at age 9. Robert came from a musical family; his mother would have her sisters over to sign Ranchero songs, his father was a pianist and his two sisters were in various bands.
There are many folk singers that Robert could be compared to, but he has a voice all his own. I thank his people for sending this Junebug video and Mescaline download from his newest album, Before Nightfall.