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Wild Horses In-Studio Performance Live @ KAXE Studio, May 26th, 2022

Grand Rapids up and coming band, Wild Horses
Wild Horses came by the KAXE studio and recorded this live set to promote the Festival Rialto, taking place June 4th at Rapids Brewing Co.

Wild Horses is headlining the Festival Rialto at Rapids Brewing Co. on Saturday, June 4th. Ahead of the festival, the band stopped by the KAXE studio in Grand Rapids and played a special live, in-studio set. Click the player above to listen to the whole set and get yourself thoroughly excited for the Festival on Saturday.

Wild Horses (Jed, Ariana, McKeon, and JJ) arrived to the KAXE studio together, each carrying their instruments. Jed with his guitar, Ariana with her fiddle, McKeon with his big bass fiddle, and JJ lugged a bass drum and a few percussion items. The band was perfectly on time, which was surprising considering they had spent part of the morning changing out the battery on the Wild Horses van. Jed had grease smeared on his forearm to prove it. You'll know the van when you see it parked outside the brewery or chugging along the highway all around the northland and beyond.

The band stood together in KAXE Studio 1 around four mics. Jed and Ariana were next to each other, their chemistry palpable in every note and harmony in their songs, and even in their banter between. McKeon stood nearby, watching closely but maintaining his own audio soundscape within the studio. JJ kicked the bass drum with shoeless feet and slapped a tambourine that sat on the studio counter in front of him. JJ asked the band if he should use a metal water bottle as a makeshift cymbal, but there was still too much water in the bottle and the pitch was just off, so they scrapped that idea.

Seeing the band play up-close demonstrated the depth and thoughtfulness the four play with. The slow number they opened with, "Like the Sea", was sweet and meaningful, and it sounded like they were playing only for me. But when they switched gears and played two of their up-beat numbers, KAXE Studio 1 was unable to contain them. "All That's Left" along with "And It Rained" where foot-stompers that made it very hard to sit still inside the cramped studio. Seeing them perform each of these songs live on the big stage at Festival Rialto on Saturday will offer different types of pleasure once the Wild Horses are un-reigned.

This in-studio performance showed why Wild Horses has been rising steadily since performing for the first time together last year at The Grand Rapids River Fest. They have really good original songs. They are humble. They take their music seriously, but not themselves. They are creative, kind, and know how to change a battery in a van. Most of all, they represent the best of what the northern Minnesota music scene has to offer: great music with a strong sense of place bringing people together.

Wild Horses In-Studio 1
Wild Horses together in Studio 1 @ KAXE studios in Grand Rapids, Minnesota
 Jed Laplant playing and smiling
Jed Laplant playing and smiling
Ariana Laplant on fiddle
Ariana Laplant on fiddle
McKeon plays bass in the studio
McKeon plays bass in the studio
JJ Plays Drums In Studio
JJ Plays Drums In Studio
From the Wild Horses website: Hailing from the deep woods of northern Minnesota, Wild Horses is quickly becoming one of the regions hottest rising folk-rock bands. Having already shared the stage with renowned artists such as Langhorne Slim, Charlie Parr, and Trampled by Turtles, they have left a lasting impression on their show-goers by packing venues across the state. They’ve often been compared to bands like Mumford and Sons, The Lumineers, and Gregory Alan Isakov due to their ability to draw listeners in with both captivating melodies and a hard-hitting drive in the same live experience. Wild Horses seeks to convey the unbridled heart of the Wild West in their music. Through time spent in its wide open spaces and often unforgiving nature, the band offers intimate knowledge of the need to move forward no matter what terrain lies ahead. Their debut record, Runaway, will be released in the summer of 2022. Wild Horses' core consists of Jed LaPlant (vocals, guitar), Ariana LaPlant (vocals, keys, fiddle), McKeon Hugh Roberts (bass), and JJ Snell (drums).

Festival Rialto Poster

Max Philbrook (he/him) is a Producer at KAXE focused on telling the stories of the people, events, and organizations that make up the fabric of northern Minnesota. Based out of Grand Rapids, Max spends his time reading fiction at the library, seeing sports and live music, and supporting the arts and cultural events in the area. Get in touch with Max if you have a story to tell, an event to publicize, or just want to chat about life in the northland.