Source: unDraw

We recently had the opportunity to talk to Lydia, a member of the Austin-based band Ley Line (www.leylinesound.com). During the interview, Lydia talked about the band’s current activities, future plans, and worries about how the COVID-19 outbreak may affect upcoming festivals.

Here’s a transcript of our conversation (edited for clarity):

ME: Can you tell me a little bit about you and your work?

LYDIA: I’m one of four members in Ley Line. We actually just got a manager, but up until this point we’ve been self-managed. So until recently, we booked all of our own tours and communicated with venues ourselves. We still design and order our own merch, and all four of us are songwriters. We also co-produce everything that we record, so we work closely with engineers and producers.

ME: Awesome. So, what is in the works for you guys right now?

LYDIA: We are working on our second album. We just finished tracking, so we’re finishing mixing and working out the release plan. We have a big tour this summer. It’s kind of like three separate tours over the course of the summer. And we’re going to be pressing this album to vinyl. So we’re currently planning out exactly how we’re going to release and distribute — if we want to partner with a distribution company, how we want to get PR involved with the tour, and figuring out what to do now that SXSW is cancelled.

ME: Are you worried about the Corona virus, with touring and traveling?

LYDIA: My biggest worry is that festivals will get canceled. These festivals are more small scale than Coachella or ACL. But that would suck because the bulk of our money comes from touring and festivals.

ME: What would you say are your current challenges and priorities?

LYDIA: The priority is just making this a sustainable career path. So the challenge is that as we grow as a band, we have to take less gigs in Austin. Now most of our money from playing shows is from touring, and even though we can play bigger shows than we were and get paid more, we can’t play as often. So it kind of like evens out to what we were making before. So we’re figuring out innovative ways to bring in income, whether it’s through private events, sponsorships, or partnerships with different organizations. Basically other ways to make money with our music besides just playing shows.

ME: How hard is it to manage everything on a day-to-day basis?

LYDIA: Depends on the day. Sometimes there are communication errors, or we show up at a gig and it doesn’t go as planned. For example, we find out we don’t have the contact information for someone, or we didn’t realize that we wouldn’t have food provided for us. Those things happen, and then we talk about it and ask ourselves – how do we move forward next time? And add that into gig logistics and live and learn.

ME: What information sources do you go to to keep up with your industry?

LYDIA: Mostly, we get advice from professionals. For example, we just met with a lawyer who gave us really good advice. I think that speaking to someone in person is always better than 10 different people’s opinions on the internet.

ME: How do you keep up with what’s happening in the Austin music scene?

LYDIA: Instagram is the big one. Following people, asking friends on Instagram, and then because we are on Do512 and Spotify, we get updates.

If you want to learn more about Ley Line and listen to some amazing multilingual folk harmonies, you can visit their website here: www.leylinesound.com

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