Austin To Boston is Marcus Haney’s newest film, produced by Ben Lovett of Mumford & Sons and Ty Johnson. Recently released on Netflix on June 12th, 2015, this film is the perfect harmony of music, travel, storytelling & just a damn good time. Critics seem to agree as the film has swept up a number of awards at various film festivals across the country.
Gill Landry, singer, storyteller, and former member of Old Crow Medicine Show, served as the narrator and head Volkswagen van expert. This made him an extremely valuable member across this 3,000 mile tour from Austin to Boston with 5 Volkswagen vans in 2 weeks with 4 bands, Ben Howard, The Staves, Nathaniel Rateliff, and Bear’s Den.
There was a unique film and digital divide among the documentary style bringing in both worlds of new and old. It was great metaphorically as the film itself carried a vintage aspect with the VW vans and tour way of life, but at the same time was new and youthful with beautiful talent.
This cross-country tour was planned as a Communion Tour which is a “flourishing community of musicians and fans, providing a first independent platform for the best young artists on London’s circuit” via the Communion Music Group Facebook page, founded by Ben Lovett (Mumford & Sons), Kev Jones (Bear’s Den), and producer Ian Grimble.
let’s take a look at a few things we learned from the film…
1. Young director, Marcus Haney is no one hit wonder. He made another film and it’s awesome. Check out his first film No Cameras Allowed. Seriously. Go watch it.
2. Gill Landry shared his godly voice as the narrator of this film. Disney will be calling soon for their next wild life documentary.
3. Bear’s Den embarked on their first tour as a band and were welcomed to the tour life madness with the coolest people around.
4. The Brits love shooting guns and making fun of America’s obsession with them.
5. Whataburger won’t give you your food in the drive-thru if you and your 24 friends pretend to be the car.
6. The Staves can harmonize the crap out of a Dixie Chicks song, and any song for that matter. (Not a video from the actual film)
7. Campgrounds and skipping stones are not a thing of the past. The group stays mostly in campgrounds and maybe two-star hotels throughout their journey. Instead of five-star living, the group enjoyed each other’s company which is refreshing to see in this digital age.
8. Ben Howard just learned to play basketball and isn’t very good. Sorry Ben. (Better learn that ‘lingo’)
9. Nathaniel Rateliff is SO underrated. Like seriously, how is he not everywhere. SO.MUCH.TALENT. I like that this film goes into what has made him the artist he is. Great storytelling.
10. People working at record stores should be required to identify big musicians like Ben Howard and Ben Lovett when they walk into your store. (This is for you Mr.-the-store-is-closing-in-4-I-mean-3 minutes, dude). SMH.
11. The cinematography throughout this film was delicious. Can we just talk about the backlight cascading over Bear’s Den in the shot where they were singing Stubborn Beast. Gahhhh! So beautiful!
12. The Staves are U.S. geographically challenged, and that’s okay. This scene was adorable, “If Texas is here, where’s Tennessee then?” It’s okay girls, you’ll get to know your way around our confusing lands soon enough.
14. No Marcus Haney film is complete without fireworks.
15. The bands and the makers of this film all just seem like really delightful humans and the fact that they can share their artistic talents together so well is definitely something to be envious of. I love their world and can’t help but wish to be even a fly on the wall of one of the VW vans.
If you haven’t already, be sure to catch Austin To Boston now on Netflix or stream on Amazon.
You can watch the Austin To Boston movie trailer, rent it, or buy it here.
Check out Haney’s next film, Breaking The Triangle.