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Independence, Kansas, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2014

Independence, Kansas, United States
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Pop Folk




"Mumuration's Joyous Pop Family"

by Ari Roth

Although Murmuration is technically a new band, the joyous pop group has a long history. In fact, the launch of the Murmuration name is something of a rebirth for the project, which originally started out when bandleaders Colton Davy and Zara Davy began making acoustic music together under their own names as 16 year olds.

Colton explains, “six years later, we grew to a full band, and with that we wanted something to encompass who we actually are. The band name was Colton and Zara before, because it was really easy to be like, ‘yeah, we’re Colton and Zara!’ but we wanted something that encompassed who we were, and what we wanted to represent.”

After much deliberation, they finally chose the name Murmuration, which is the word for “a giant flock of starlings gathered, this huge flock of birds coming together. They might each be a common thing by themselves, but when they come together, they make something beautiful and amazing, something so much bigger than they are.”

Fittingly, the band’s music is a product of collective playing from each of the band’s eight members, none of whom are flashy or virtuosic on their own, but who combine to create a sound much greater than the sum of its parts. The band’s members range from ages 16 to 24, and include Colton’s brother Dustin Davy on percussion, and bassist Darren Schrag, along with Colton’s sister Stevie Schrag on auxiliary percussion, who is also married to Darren. Taylor Dufur plays synthesizer for Murmuration, and Colton says that “she adds such a dynamic element to our band, because when we were just acoustic, it really had that natural, raw feeling, but when we bring in a synth, it brings a different life to the music.” Matt Schoonmaker on drums rounds out the lineup, along with Colton and Zara still at the center, on vocals and guitar and vocals and keyboards, respectively.

The announcement of Murmuration’s new name also came with a brand new single, “Making Sound”. Colton says, “we really wanted to make a song that celebrated our new name, and that encapsulated who we are, and what we’re trying to do. The song is all about coming together and making sound. It’s a fun, upbeat, happy song!”

With this song released, the band is already looking to the future, and Zara says that they have another single planned for release soon as well. Many of the new songs were born out of an experiment in prolific productivity, and Zara describes how “this year we challenged ourselves to write a hundred songs within a few months. We’re almost there, we have about eighteen left, and we’re trying to find the best of the best of what we can do, and bring that to our band to make it a full album.”

Colton adds that the band wants to use the simple joy and excitement of their music to deal with universal, profound themes. He tells me, “we love to talk about the deeper things in life, and we hope to cause people to think and ponder with us. We like to capture the feeling of bigness, and the sense of longing that everybody has. That’s what we’re hoping to encapsulate in the album, but also this sense of fun. We want to bring those elements together.”

Given the band’s sound, their constellation of musical influences make sense: Colton and Zara cite popular bands and artists such as Foster The People, Imagine Dragons, John Mayer, Vampire Weekend and Jack Johnson, along with smaller indie acts such as Josh Garrels and Runaway Symphony, the latter of whom Murmuration toured with several years ago. In particular, Zara is a huge fan of Texan indie pop band Eisley, who she says have “been my favorite since I was thirteen, and have impacted my life pretty heavily. They’ve really affected how I sing and how I write, and even how I view life.” Zara gravitates towards “anything fun and energetic,” while Colton loves “organic, natural-feeling music,” qualities which have both translated into the band’s music.

Although the majority of those acts are secular, the influence of artists like Josh Garrels suggests something of the Christian element that informs Murmuration’s music. When I initially contacted Colton for this interview, the band was away leading worship at a camp called CentriKid, and spirituality is a central aspect of the band, both in life and in music.

Colton says that “it affects everything about our life, everything about who we are. It shapes us, it leads every thought, every word, every action that we do.” The jubilation of praising God is suffused throughout their music, whether or not their lyrics are always overtly referencing religious themes. Colton agrees, telling me that “it has definitely seeped into our music, and we like that because we love God, and we’re Christians, and we want to make music that we believe pleases God, and also encourages people.”

Like many unsigned bands, Murmuration have fast learned that their job goes far beyond simply making music and playing shows. On one hand, the band has spent enough time involved in the industry that they’ve come to the realization that “a lot of the things that they do, we actually can do on our own, and we have the resources and the capabilities (and enough people!) within our own talents to be able to reach out and accomplish a lot of what they do.”

Still, there is no denying that “it can be extremely overwhelming, trying to be a marketer and a songwriter and a social networker,” and that running your own band on the business side can be a daunting full time job in itself. Given all of that, Colton does acknowledge that “if the opportunity arises, and it’s a good label, we would still probably work with a label,” perhaps leading to their “dream,” where they are able to devote themselves entirely to their art without taking on so many other business responsibilities.

Now, Murmuration have set their sights firmly on recording and completing their album, which will doubtless win them countless new fans. The band also hopes to organize a particularly warm, intimate tour that fits the band’s style and ethos perfectly, in which the band will play in the living rooms of some of their biggest fans.

Colton explains, “we’ve met a lot of friends throughout our touring years, and we’ve realized that a lot of people are interested in having us come play shows at their houses. We’ve done a few of them before, and they’ve always had a really positive effect, so we wanted to make a tour out of it, connecting all of our friends together. We’re going to play at a lot of our fans’ houses, and they will invite their friends over, and we’re going to put on a really fun show, and hang out after the show and make friends. That’s what we really love to do.”

This kind of closeness, love and connection is at the heart of what makes Murmuration an exciting band, one that is getting ready to embark on a beautiful new chapter. - That Music Mag


Still working on that hot first release.



Murmuration began in 2014 when The Colton and Zara Band decided to expand in number of members and in color of music. "Our name wasn't matching the skill of the other numerous members or the music we were heading towards with the expansion, so we thought it was time to find a unifying name for the sound we were becoming," says Colton and Zara. Their roots are originally out of Independence, Kansas, though the members flocked from other regions of the country. 

Ranging in ages 16-24, the former band has released 3 albums and a single, "You Are Love" that is currently airing on several radio stations nationwide and world-wide, along with Daily Unsigned Radio and Rdio.

Murmuration is adventurous in nature and style, spreading music worldwide that's fun and upbeat, yet also purposeful and encouraging in the lives of all ages. They've opened for bands such as Sanctus Real, We Are Leo, After Edmund, Par~a~digm Rock Band, and DaMac. Zara also added vocals onto the hip-hop album, "Man Up 116" song, "Envy", featuring Lecrae, Tedashii, KB, PRo, Trip Lee, and Andy Mineo. Their cover video of "Don't You Worry Child" was recently accepted into the Global Citizen Festival. They also recently won Daily Unsigned Radio's Project Aha competition, showcased for Belk Clothing Industry's "Modern Southern Music" competition, and were interviewed by PopVltr and Musician's Friend. Their adventurous tour experiences cover a West Coast Tour, Nashville Tour, The Extreme Tour, and a Midwest Tour, performing more than 100 to 200 shows yearly in festivals, venues, and conferences. 

Currently, Murmuration is planning tour dates for 2014-2015, has just released their debut single, "Making Sound", and are preparing to release a new, full-length debut album following.

Band Members