SXSW 2018: 25 Best Country, Americana Shows We Saw

From eclectic sets by Devin Dawson and Caroline Rose to star-is-born turns by Billy Strings and Liz Brasher

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Courtney Marie Andrews
Lorne Thomson/Redferns14/25

Courtney Marie Andrews

Courtney Marie Andrews tends to lean into the melancholy undercurrents that run through her music, but the air of the ethereal that characterized both 2016's Honest Life and the new May Your Kindness Remain lifts when she performs onstage. Her late afternoon set at Cheer Up Charlies' indoor stage on Saturday found the singer combatting a chattering crowd, yet that oddly provided an ideal counterpoint to her spooky, sad Americana, making her vocals seem even more high and lonesome. Backed by a band that runs lean and sinewy, Andrews sounds tougher in concert than she does on record and that lends gravity to her sad songs: they no longer feel like dreams, they feel etched from experience. S.T.E. 

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