Heart Hunters
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Heart Hunters

Atlanta, GA | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | SELF

Atlanta, GA | SELF
Established on Jan, 2013
Duo Americana Folk

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Dec
01
Heart Hunters @ McMenamins White Eagle Saloon & Hotel

Portland, Oregon, United States

Portland, Oregon, United States

Nov
10
Heart Hunters @ Charles and Myrtle's Coffeehouse

Chattanooga, Tennessee, United States

Chattanooga, Tennessee, United States

Nov
03
Heart Hunters @ The Local

Nashville, Tennessee, United States

Nashville, Tennessee, United States

Music

Press


The Heart Hunters' music might sound delicate on first listen, but it packs a heavy punch. Born of the American zeitgeist, as well as the personal experiences of Brianna Blackbird and her husband No River City founder Drew de Man, American Eclipse is simultaneously a deeply personal and overtly political album. (to read more, follow the link) - No Depression


"Atlanta-based duo Heart Hunters beam rays of Americana sunshine...jangly yet complex roots-pop...pushes the boundaries of country music...." (to read more, follow the link above) - Wide Open Country


I had the opportunity to meet and hangout with Brianna Blackbird and Drew de Man (otherwise known as Heart Hunters) before they entered the studio to record their stunning debut album American Eclipse (Pretend Sweethearts). So I was looking forward to hearing their voices blend together, wondering how their life experiences would shape their songs, and curious how Peter Case, singer songwriter extraordinaire, would produce their effort. With high expectations I pressed play and sat back to listen.

The first track “Normal America” hits you immediately. Blackbird’s voice is instantly compelling and when the tale of how our commercialist culture runs us into the grave mixes with classic country steel guitar you just have to sit back and let it wash over you.

De Man starts off “Sparrow to the Moon” before Blackbird joins him. Their voices complement each other perfectly and intertwine with the jangly guitar and Don Heffington’s propulsive drumming, leaving us with one of the album’s standout moments. “The Good Fight” instantly conjures up The Beatles’ “Dear Prudence” but moves away quickly as Fats Kaplin’s swirling middle eastern inspired strings weave in and out of the combined vocals and bombastic drumming. “Cristo,” sung entirely in Spanish and sparsely accompanied with guitar and violin, is as beautiful a song as you will ever hear. Blackbirds voice is delicate, wanting and soaring throughout. “A Thousand Lifetimes” is hands down my favorite song. It is upbeat, again thanks to Heffington’s excellent drumming and Blackbird’s love song to her partner sums up a relationship that was impossible to resist, fought hard for and will not be easily surrendered.

The organ and mandolin playing in “Wild Little Wind” adds flavor to a lyrical showcase where the duo combine voices with amazing results. Closing with “A Love This True” seems appropriate. De Man takes lead vocal, accompanied by some nice mandolin courtesy of Fats Kaplin, before Blackbird joins in. Her voice is a revelation and I found myself listening and relistening to this track. This is rare for me to say but there is not a single misfire in the entire collection. The players came to play and Peter Case put the pieces together resulting in a fantastic album. American Eclipse is a crisp, personal, engaging, intriguing, inspired release from Heart Hunters. - Americana Highways


Creative Loafing's 2018 Best of Atlanta - Creative Loafing


Discography

"American Eclipse" - released July 20th, 2018
"Becoming the Tender Animal" - released 2015 under the name Pretend Sweethearts

Photos

Bio

When you hear the duo Heart Hunters harmonize, you might guess that Brianna Blackbird and Drew de Man were lovers. And you’d be right.  Bri’s voice solos gorgeously and blends sweetly while she plays upright bass or guitar. If Drew’s voice has something twangy about it, he comes by it naturally, having grown up in the South. The harmonies are potent. Their songs are personal, political, spiritual - picked out on old guitars and upright bass, doused with pedal steel, sparkling with harmony. They've opened for Birds of Chicago, Gaelynn Lea, Tim Easton and Richard Buckner. 

Brianna and Drew met while studying music therapy in Portland, Oregon. They formed a duo in 2013 that played cafes, bars, and clubs all along the West Coast and also brought their music to homeless shelters, youth detention centers, prisons and rehab facilities. 
 
As they were falling in love, Bri and Drew lived an adventurous life on the road--sleeping on moonlit beaches, in hidden caves, shitty hotels and under ancient redwoods. Their wanderlust - and their need to find affordable housing - led them deep into South America and finally to a mountainside in Bolivia. Bri and Drew immersed themselves in songwriting and Andean culture and had their son there. Their two kids travel with Heart Hunters, touring the US and Europe.
 
Growing up in Georgia, Drew's soundtrack was country, blues, string band and southern rock. He also went to lots of Grateful Dead shows but never shied away from punk rock. He founded his first band, No River City, in 2001 and spent the next several years making records, touring the country and sharing stages with such artists as Iron & Wine, Calexico and Alejandro Escovedo. On the west coast, he spent some years playing in Fast Rattler with Brendan Phillips, son of the late U. Utah Phillips, to whom the band pays tribute. 
 
Brianna Blackbird was raised in Oregon and spent many a rainy day getting lost in cassettes of Celtic folk. The daughter of a music teacher, she was raised on classic rock and Beethoven, and sang in several choirs and studying various vocal techniques, piano and guitar. Bri studied performance and social activism at Naropa College in Boulder, Colorado before moving to Brooklyn, where she began songwriting in earnest. Her songs are political, spiritual and often pretty dark, borrowing equally from Celtic, 90’s alternative and songwriters like Kate Wolf, Patty Griffin and Neil Young. She picked up the upright after learning some bass basics from Joe Stevens of Coyote Grace. 
 
Heart Hunters is currently based in Fairburn, Georgia. They teach music, work on houses, try to show up for marches, do session work and somehow manage to raise two awesome kids. Their new record, produced by Peter Case, was released July 20th, 2108. 

Band Members