Lauren Keenan videotaped the Shirley brothers in conversation and rehearsal.

cardinal sons photo
Cardinal Sons

When My Spilt Milk debuted an unreleased track from The Echo Choir EP, last summer, I wrote:

There’s nothing sexy about pop/rock songs, but there’s also nothing like a song that stops whatever you’re doing and changes your mood. On The Echo Choir EPCardinal Sons work with the same instruments, tropes, and musical building blocks as a million bands before them, but their songs still have surprises. They’re not reinventing anything, but the songs are reminders that attention to the details of sound, songs, and songwriting make all the difference. 

Cardinal Sons will play the French Quarter Fest's BMI Songwriter Stage at the Historic New Orleans Collection at 1:30 p.m., and recently My Spilt Milk contributor Lauren Keenan videotaped an interview with the Shirley brothers--Joe, John and Dave--at home as well as part of a rehearsal. Here are her notes:

When John, Joe, and Dave Shirley talk about how they came together as a band, it sounds more like the result of fate than any decision of their own. The three brothers grew up singing together in church in their hometown of Jackson, Mississippi, and Joe and Dave have been playing together since high school. Once John came in, they explained, everything just seemed to make sense.

Though the brothers are very in sync--they talk about how naturally the creative process flows between the three of them when writing music--they don’t hesitate to poke fun at each other, and spend a good amount of time laughing at each other’s jokes. Watch them talk below about what it’s like working together, their roots, and the direction their music is taking.