Music Notes: Review of The DuPont Brothers

The Right Frequency: When Brothers Play Nice
By Fay Aiyana Grant | Jan 22, 2014

One of the first questions I intended to ask The DuPont Brothers was, “How on earth do two brothers manage writing, producing, recording, touring and performing together without killing each other?”

Not that we don’t all love our siblings deep down at the end of the day — no matter what the circumstances — it just simply seemed like a recipe for disaster. Before I got the chance to dig into the behind-the-scenes gossip, the Vermont-based duo began their sound check and politely prepped for their show, kindly taking advice from each other about the mix and stage setup at The Classic Wineseller.

Not only was I impressed by their technical abilities, I couldn’t help but be touched by the kindness and respect that they had for each other…and well, that answered my question.

From the moment they began to sing, I was completely captivated by their seamless blend of vocal harmonies and simple melodies. Despite the fact that the brothers first started their musical careers on opposite sides of the country – Zack, 28, started his solo tour in 2005 and Sam, 23, in 2008 — both have, seemingly independent of one another, created something unforgettable with their emotional and unique playing styles.

The immense contrast in their musical approach was compelling, and surprisingly, Sam DuPont’s clean, tender voice was the perfect compliment to the emotive rasp of his older brother. This duo of remarkably different brothers, both in musical style and personality, came together at just the right frequency.

From start to finish, they never left a dull moment for their audience, cracking jokes and telling fascinating stories behind their songs. At one point, members of the audience began to demand that the brothers play ‘The Waynesville Song,’ which I later found out was a song that Sam finished after performing at The Classic Wineseller last November.

He explained that he’d been working on the song since the start of the tour but was struggling with an emotional block. When asked what inspired him to complete his song here in Waynesville, he explained, “It was our first night off in a while and it reminded me of my hometown. The people were nice here.”

The song is titled "The First Time I Fell" and will appear on their upcoming self-produced album "Heavy As Lead." The anticipated release is set for sometime this June and will undoubtedly please current fans of The DuPont Brothers. Luckily for us, they say there is no doubt that they will be back to perform in Waynesville again soon.

For those of you who missed out on their previous performances, you can visit their website (www.dupontbrothersmusic.com) and watch live, in-studio performances from their self-titled EP.

The DuPont Brothers will continue to impress with their hypnotic songs, impeccable fingerpicking abilities and entertaining performances. They can be compared to the likes of one of my favorites, indie-folk artist José González, as well as the works of Leo Kottke, Paul Simon and Crosby, Stills & Nash.

Like myself, both Zack and Sam DuPont believe strongly in fate and the importance of synchronicity and circumstance, which is very apparent in their lyric writing.  This can clearly be heard in Zack’s new song "1,000 Years Old" where he sings, “You can choose to believe…time is yours to waste or keep.”

The brothers have experienced great love and loss, which they described as a great inspiration for their songwriting.  Every song allowed the audience to connect with the brothers on a musical and personal level, making them unforgettable to anyone who sees them live.  There is no question; the DuPont Brothers are deeply passionate old souls with a new and refreshing take on contemporary folk-pop music.

For more information on The DuPont Brothers, visit www.dupontbrothersmusic.com

Fay Aiyana Grant recently moved to Waynesville from Los Angeles, CA, where she worked as a music editor for FOX, NBC/Universal, CBS Television and Sony Pictures.

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