The Wooden Wings return to New Orleans on Friday, Aug. 30, for a show at the Gasa Gasa, and according to co-founder Cherie LeJeune, the band's live performances are better than ever.
"We're definitely a tighter band now because of the tour. We've been playing together every single night for a month," LeJeune said.
The Wooden Wings 2013 month-long tour took them as far north as New York City and as far west as Fort Worth, Texas.
They played over a dozen cities, including Chicago, Atlanta and Washington, D.C., as well as smaller cities and towns.
The tour let them promote their latest recording, "Liminal," to current fans and new audiences.
"We play songs off of 'Liminal,' and we're playing other songs, too," LeJeune said. "We certainly keep it interesting on stage."
At one time, LeJeune's focus was on the acoustic duo she formed with Molly Portier. But four years ago, they wanted to expand into a full band when they began recording songs for their "Liminal" release.
"We wanted drums in it and thundering guitars. The bands we loved were rock bands. We have three more incredible musicians with us now," LeJeune said.
Now, the Wooden Wings member roster is Albert Miliere (bass), Harold Rosenberg (guitar), Anthony Mikhael (drums), Portier (guitar and vocals) and LeJeune (guitar and vocals).
Rocking out was a natural extension of what LeJeune has loved about music since she was a child in Lafayette.
"Growing up, I listened to a lot of '80s rock and roll. In high school, both Molly and I hit a point where we wanted to make music. It was really fate that our paths overlapped," she said.
The fate that brought them together was summer camp. Portier (from New Orleans) went to a camp in Lafayette where she met LeJeune. They stayed in touch online and became musical collaborators.
"We were both picking up the guitar in high school. Molly picked out a cheap recorder and we started fooling around," LeJeune said. "We were so young that we couldn't get into bars, so she and I played coffee houses."
Those first coffee house acoustic shows let the women get comfortable on stage presenting their songs together.
Their experience as a duo strengthened their confidence enough to later create a rock group. LeJeune thinks that was a very good way to start.
"I think if we had a whole band at the beginning, we would not have been ready for it. We had to evolve from a duo into a band," LeJeune said.
As far as songwriting goes, LeJeune says it typically begins as a solo effort.
"At the very start, it's usually Molly or me writing separately. It could be a chord progression, lyrics, and an idea for a song then we typically bring it the band," she said.
The results of their songwriting can be heard online at TheWoodenWings.Bandcamp.com, which also sells their CD, digital music downloads and band merchandise.
LeJeune said she likes touring and studio recordings because both allow their music to be shared and appreciated.
"Touring is special, and you can really connect with people. But having an album is something you leave with them, and they can continue to enjoy your music," she said.
Catch the Wooden Wings return to New Orleans on Aug. 30 as they perform at the Gasa Gasa, 4920 Freret St. For more info visit http://thewoodenwings.com.
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