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The WDVX Blue Plate Special – 9/15 – No Yonder / McKain Lakey

September 15 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

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Sometimes the pursuit of our greater humanity involves jumping into life head first. That’s what McKain Lakey does. You can tell by her songs.

Armed with George the trusty road cat, a carful of instruments, and all the fight of a rambling, rural-raised, queer femme wanderer, McKain Lakey is one to be reckoned with. She’s the rare human who feels as comfortable wielding a chisel as she does a guitar, who can be as often spotted behind the soundboard in a crowded venue as discussing the intersections of race and gender in old time music with a classroom full of 5th graders.

Described by What’s Up Magazine as “a time capsule unearthed, fine-tuned and re-imagined”, Lakey draws creative inspiration from far corners of the American music tradition, tracing the lines of musical lineage that connect Old Time to Rockabilly, Country to Cajun to Dixieland. She’s a dedicated student of tradition, but at once unafraid to stare down convention through the modern lens of her lived experience. Her new album, Somewhere, blurs lines of old and new, referencing musical textures of past eras while unabashedly exploring topics of mental health, family separation, rural identity and queer love.

“My introduction to American folk music was so rooted in the knowledge that I am a part of living tradition, a web connected across time and distance, and built by generations of creative and resilient people.” – McKain Lakey

When Brad Gerke was about 5 years old, his Grandmother from Chatsworth, GA visited his family in Florida. At some point she asked him to get her something “from in yonder,” to which he replied “Nana, we don’t have a yonder.” Around 20 years later, it dawned on him that the music he writes is exemplified by that conversation. His roots are deeply southern and steeped in tradition, but his life has been mostly modern and suburban. So he chose the name “No Yonder” for his band.

Blending the sounds of folk, rock, and emo, No Yonder puts a southern spin on indie sensibilities. Gerke calls on diverse influences to reconcile his rural and suburban experiences, creating characters and stories depicting joy, failure, and the pitfalls of being human. Drawing comparisons to Wilco, The Mountain Goats, and Bright Eyes, No Yonder’s lyric-heavy indie rock is based in Atlanta, GA.

No Yonder is recording their debut album at Maze Studios in Atlanta which will release this summer. Produced and engineered by Annie Leeth, the album features guitar work from Tyler Key, bass from Hibbs’ Family Band’s Garrett Hibbs, and drums from Ryan Moore. The band is preparing to slingshot out of the pandemic with its first shows this summer before releasing their premier full-length album.



September 15
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
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301 S. Gay Street
Knoxville, TN 37902 United States
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