ACL Weekend One: Tame Impala, Gary Clark Jr., Lizzo Make It a Year of Tough Choices
Who we’re excited to see this weekend at ACL
by Derek Van Wagner
The lineup has been revealed, the stages are built and hopefully you have your wristbands ready to go. Now it’s time to make some tough decisions about which shows to see at the 2019 Austin City Limits Music Festival. This year’s schedule is packed with big names like Album of the Year Grammy winner Kacey Musgraves, buzzy acts like pop sensation Billie Eilish, and – as always – potential new favorite artists. ACL Fest runs Oct. 4-6 and Oct. 11-13 in Austin’s Zilker Park. Here are the early shows we’re excited about for Weekend One and the headliners facing off each night of the festival:
Sam Fender (1:15-2 p.m., Vrbo Stage)
Solid English rock & roll. It may be pretty early in the day for folks that can’t get out of work, but it will be worth it to see this English singer-songwriter who can belt a tune and play a mean guitar (yes, he does play a Fender). He made a splash during SXSW and is destined for the big stage. Catch him if you can.
Cherry Glazerr (2:45-3:30 p.m., Vrbo Stage)
Rock trio based out of LA. Two female vocalists with catchy hooks, raw guitar rifts and heavy bass synths give them a sound that’s hard to put your finger on. Perfect act for a bar fight, curious to see if they can match the same intensity on a larger stage.
Tyler Childers (3:30-4:30 p.m., American Express Stage)
Folk singer-songwriter with a country twang. His sound would fit well on the O Brother, Where Art Thou soundtrack. He’ll get your toe tapping and your skirts swaying.
Kaytranada (5-6 p.m., Miller Lite Stage)
One of the best DJs and producers in the game. His songs never fail to start a dance party. He doesn’t play many shows in the U.S., so this show will be a treat.
The Raconteurs (5:30-6:30 p.m., American Express Stage)
Kick ass rock & roll. Jack White and his band might tear another hole in the ozone with his screaming guitar madness.
Guns N Roses vs. Tame Impala
Appetite for Destruction versus Elephant. Pyrotechnics versus psychedelic light show. Axl and Slash versus Kevin Parker. This one is a total toss up and depends on if you want to hear gritty rock and roll that gives you flashbacks of getting a speeding ticket or if you feel like having a sonic acid trip. Your call.
Brittany Howard (4-5 p.m., Honda Stage)
Powerhouse vocals with soulful backing band. The lead singer from the Alabama Shakes is spreading her wings. Howard had too many songs in her head so she decided to take them on the road and go solo for a minute before linking back up with her band.
Kali Uchis (5-6 p.m., Miller Lite Stage)
Latin R&B, with a dash of hip hop. Uchis has collaborated with plenty of rising stars and is carving a name for herself with her genre-bending brand of pop.
Gary Clark Jr. (6-7 p.m., American Express Stage)
Home town hero and purveyor of modern blues. He rules, enough said.
Childish Gambino vs. The Cure
If you weren’t lucky enough to see The Cure perform at ACL in 2013, it was fantastic. That said, Austin’s been waiting to see Childish Gambino play his songs from his Grammy winning album Awaken My Love, especially with his last second injury and cancellation from last year. Either way you win.
IDLES (2-3 p.m., Honda Stage)
English rock band with heavy punk influence. Expect a shirtless frontman chanting captivating battle cries and a steady backbeat from the motley band behind him. There’s a high chance of getting caught in a mosh pit at this one –you’ve been warned!
Rosalía (4-5 p.m., Honda Stage)
Spanish singer with hypnotic R&B tunes. She has been collaborating with some of the brightest stars (including James Blake & Billie Eilish), so you may see her on a few other stages throughout the fest. A good place to fake that you know how to dance salsa.
Lizzo (7-8 p.m., Miller Lite Stage)
This breakout pop star has put together a string of undeniably catchy pop tunes that carry a message of sexy confidence. Expect lots of dancers on stage, a booming voice and a surprise jazz flute solo. One of the strongest personalities on stage guaranteed.
Cardi B vs. Mumford and Sons
These two are polar opposites. Either you want an over-the-top Vegas-esque hip hop show or two hours of charming British accents belting earworm folk rock until they are red in the face.