Curtis McMurtry

Curtis McMurtry


  • June 22, 2018 from 8:00pm to 9:30pm
  • CSPS Hall
  • $15 advance | $18 door

Writing songs about villains that believe they’re victims, Curtis McMurtry is a brash and undeniable talent. Influenced by Fiona Apple, Billy Strayhorn and Leonard Cohen, his music combines sinister lyrics with lush, unconventional arrangements. His first album, Respectable Enemy, released in August 2014, drew comparisons to Calexico and John Fullbright. His sophomore outing, The Hornet's Nest, appeared in February 2017, and continues to garner critical acclaim. Its tracks were featured on NPR's Weekend Edition, while "Wrong Inflection" was included on the soundtrack of Tig Notaro's Amazon series One Mississippi.

Born and raised in Austin, Curtis grew up surrounded by local musicians of all genres. At college he studied music composition and ethnomusicology, while he focused on writing contemporary chamber music for banjo and strings. After graduation he moved to Nashville to sharpen his songwriting skills, co-writing with elder statesmen like Fred Koller and Guy Clark. He’s since moved back to Austin, where he can be found performing solo, or as part of a quartet, or as a duo with cellist Diana Burgess of Mother Falcon (the configuration he’ll bring to CSPS Hall). Says Thomas Gerbasi in New York Examiner, "Simply put, McMurtry's dark, deep albums mark him as a world-class talent who not just stands on his own merits, but soars on them."

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