Since the release of the album "Kids in Love" LP earlier this spring, West Coast-based band The Mowgli’s has spent the majority of summer on tour, rocking shows around the country with its eclectic rock-’n’-roll sound at state fairs, college campuses and annual events like beachfront Hangout Music Festival in Gulf Shores, Ala. As the group gears up for a six-week co-headlining tour with Lights and an upcoming appearance at Untapped Festival at Fair Park in Dallas this fall, vocalist/percussionist Katie Jayne Earl took a break from packing to chat with WhereTraveler about experiencing new cities through local eats, spreading good vibes and life on the road.
Since the release of the chart-topping single “San Francisco,” how has the band’s sound progressed over the last few years? Our "Kids in Love" album debuted in April, so we’ve been playing lots of songs on that album. It’s been really exciting because we’d played the first album for so long over the last two years. We’ve been a band for six years, but we’ve pretty much touring the last three years straight.
What can fans expect from upcoming performances during the fall tour with Lights and at Untapped Festival in Dallas Nov. 7 (where Lights will also perform)? We actually just met Lights recently when we checked out her show. I think people are going to get two high-energy performances, really good vibes and a night that’ll just be a lot of fun.
How would you describe the band’s musical genre? Nowadays, genres blend so much. There’s seven of us [in The Mowgli’s] and we all have different musical backgrounds and tastes so there are a lot of blurred lines, but overall I’d say we like to play good old rock ’n’ roll.
What are some of the band’s musical influences, as well as your own? We’re asked this question a lot and it’s kind of hard to answer because there are so many! The Beatles, Liza Minnelli, jazz, hip-hop, rap—we’re just inspired by music in general, and often by what we hear on the radio, from classic rock to country.
What are you most looking forward to on this tour? We’re going to be playing some songs we haven’t played in a few years, so that’s exciting. It’s going be really high-energy and I hope that people will leave feeling even better than when they walked in the door!
Are there any stops you’re excited about over the next six weeks? Kansas City is always fun because it feels like a Homecoming; LA is always fun, and I love New York.
What’s your favorite part about traveling and being on the road? Needless to say, playing the show, but I might say seeing the seasons change across the country. I love exploring new cities by taking a culinary tour: Southern food if we’re in the South; if we’re in Philly, we’re getting cheese steaks. One of our favorite things to do is spend time researching where to find the best coffee or the coolest bars in the area. We’re totally welcome to any suggestions!
The Mowgli’s are on a mission to spread love and positivity, not just through music but also when it comes to raising awareness about important issues. With a large fan base and platform, is this something the band tries to do often? It’s something we try to do as much as we can; we try to link up with a charity on every tour. It stems from our belief that there’s a domino effect that’s always in motion: If we spread good vibes and help when we can, we can inspire others to do the same. Together, there’s no problem so big we can’t make a difference, and that’s really important to us but it should be important to everybody. We hope that we’re making the world better through our platform, and hope we can encourage others to feel the same.
Check out The Mowgli's Nov. 7 at Untapped Festival in Dallas with The Flaming Lips and Nov. 8 at Warehouse Live in Houston, as well as during tour stops in Florida, Philadelphia, Nashville, New York and California.