Dead Horses WSG Kendra Swanson
Hailing from the fertile land of Wisconsin, Sarah Vos and Daniel Wolff met as youths sharing a similar sense of disenchantment having just dropped out of college and living again in the rural city of Oshkosh. A time of deep reflection – coming to terms with sexuality and needing to find an identity outside of their families’ evangelical rhetoric – they forged ahead on their own, acoustic instruments in hand. They haven’t looked back since meeting nearly a decade ago (and have traveled most of North America in the process), but their songs, filled with both trauma and triumph, despair and hope, are just as much a reflection on the past as they are optimistic in brighter days to come.
First introduced to a national audience through tours with Trampled by Turtles and Mandolin Orange, Dead Horses have performed on such legendary stages as Red Rocks Amphitheater, and at festivals from Northwest String Summit to Red Wing Roots, Red Ants Pants to Bristol Rhythm and Roots.
Known for frontwoman Vos’ “aching, haunting vocals” (No Depression) and “evocative, empathetic storytelling” (NPR Music), Dead Horses’ sound bridges indie folk and their own Midwestern approach to Americana. Lyrically, the band explores the human condition from personal musings to observations of the current American experience, taking notes from every person and city they meet along the road.
Their critically acclaimed third album, My Mother the Moon, earned profiles from Billboard to Noisey to Democracy Now!, spots in Folk Alley’s and No Depression's "Best Folk/Roots Albums of 2018" lists, and Rolling Stone Country declared them an "Artist You Need to Know."
And it seems word made its way to London, as The Who selected Dead Horses as one of a handful of U.S. bands to open for them on their symphonic Moving On! tour this fall.
Kendra Swanson is an independent folk music performer and songwriter. With strong, expressive vocals and energetic instrumentation on banjo, guitar, and fiddle, she applies a timeless sound to original compositions written from (and about) the American heartland. It has been described as "soulful," "homey," "sincere," and "heartfelt," delivered with a passionate voice that cuts through the loudest of bars (and the hardest of hearts). Her reputation as a leader of singalongs, enthusiastic storyteller, and humorist have made her performances a sought-after experience for a wide variety of audiences. As a soloist, she has shared bills with the likes of Charlie Parr, Chicago Farmer, The Waydown Wanderers, The Howlin' Brothers, Danny Barnes, the Quebe Sisters, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, and the incomparable Jerry Douglas.