Having garnered a plethora of high-praising quotables from publications across the country, a Top 10 Billboard bluegrass debut and nationwide tours, The Farewell Drifters have persuaded a legion of faithful followers with their charming indie acoustic-pop approach. Infusing their snazzy string outfit with Beach Boy-inspired harmonies and Simon & Garfunkel-type songwriting, the nashville-based boys’ newest record Yellow Tag Mondays (Heart Squeeze/Thirty Tigers) is sure to transition the band from “independent” to “major label” quickly. CCM: yellow Tag Mondays incorporates a hybrid of influences. How would you define the sound of The farewell Drifters? zach Bevill: Acoustic folk-pop with a lot of energy. We combine acoustic instruments with the harmonic and melodic sensibilities common in 60s pop music. We love catchy melodies and sunny harmonies. CCM: was this modernization of bluegrass intentional or just a part of the band’s maturation? zach: We had this vision to create music with acoustic instruments that would break pre-conceptions and bring a sense of melody and pop to the music. We have always wanted people to say, “I would never have listened to any kind of fiddle music, but I dig what you guys do.” CCM: Being mainly independent is no easy task. how does the group keep morale boosted during the inevitable ups and downs? zach: We are best friends. It’s light-hearted a lot, so even when it gets rough it’s not long before someone makes everyone laugh. There’s a lot of love in this band. CCM: as Christians, what role does faith play in your music? zach: We are who we are and we try to be honest in our music—part of that means not taking out a line or idea because it is essentially Christian. People have a lot more in common than we realize and our struggles, hopes and perspectives can resonate with people regardless of their beliefs. Faith also plays into the lifestyle we lead on the road and hopefully the way we interact with people—promot- ers, fans, etc. Remembering who we are is an important thing for us. — Andrew Greer www.thefarewelldrifters.com indie highlights The act: The Choir (Yes, the same Choir from the Rock section) The site: www.thechoir.net The sound: Indie folk-rock The Buzz: After a five-year silence, the Grammy-nominated band of industry legends returns with their 12th studio recording, Burning Like the Midnight Sun—available physically through their website and live shows and digitally everywhere. The act: Swimming with Dolphins The site: www.myspace.com/ swimmingwithdolphins The sound: Ambient electronic-pop The Buzz: As the latest Tooth & nail signing, former Owl City frontman, Austin Tofte, is independent no longer. His latest outfit, inspired by the ocean and America’s lakes, records their first full-length this summer. The act: Camera Can’t Lie The site: www.cameracantlie.com The sound: Trendy pop-rock The Buzz: Having toured with Jason Castro in support of their latest EP, Not Everyone Leaves, the Midwest band gears up for their full-length debut, produced by Ron Aniello (Lifehouse), releasing in the coming year. The Farewell Drifters CCM 49