Last October, Daiana Feuer of the New LA Folk Festival put together a Halloween event at the Echoplex to celebrate the "dark side of folk." Murder Ballads was a monstro event, with 14 acts putting their spins on death via the legends of Jesse James, Pretty Boy Floyd, John Henry, Wild Bill Jones and many more. "We hope people learn a little about this particular pillar of music history, and it seems only right to do it around Halloween," Feuer said.
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This Thursday, Oct. 20, Feuer and company are doing it again. The New LA Folk Festival, LA Record and Grand Ole Echo team up to host The Return of Murder Ballads, a Halloween tribute show dedicated to timeless songs about killers, scorned lovers and evildoers. This time, The Americans, Leslie Stevens, T.O.M (Troy Murrah of Restavrant) and more will add their own melodic and theatrical twists to old folk songs written about some of the most famous murder tales in history.
Unlike most of the shows held at the Echoplex, Murder Ballads is a sit-down event. "The seats help set the mood," says Feuer. "It makes the Echoplex feel like a theater, which elevates the experience to something special -- and a little fancier." Seats aren't the only special thing about this second Murder Ballads show: "You want to be at this event from beginning to end," says Feuer. "This year, we've got some rockers, a little folk, a little country and some experimental stuff."