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Alex and Sierra on songwriting and their debut School Night! concert

X-Factor winners, Alex and Sierra took the stage to a packed crowd at the Avalon in Hollywood on Monday night (June 16th). Their first full-length concert was part of KCRW and MFG’s “School Night!” The event was originally scheduled to be held at Bardot, but after an overwhelming amount of online RSVP’s, promoters moved it to a bigger venue.

Alex and Sierra with Interviewer, Jason Ikeler
Jason Ikeler

Alex and Sierra performed a slew of new songs from their yet to be released debut album, as well as a mash-up of Britney Spears’ “Toxic” with Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ “Thrift Shop.” The show ended with an encore performance of “Barton Hollow” by The Civil Wars, which they explained was the song they auditioned with online for X-Factor.

The duo seemed to be just as excited to be performing as the fans who were watching, their conversations in between songs reminded the audience exactly why they won Fox’s hit singing competition. Not only are they insanely talented, but they’re likeable and down to earth. They chatted to the audience about their new music and several of the co-writers were in attendance. The sound of the songs can best be described as folky-pop, ranging from up tempo country songs like, “Do You Think About Cheating on Me?” to power ballads like “Bumper Car,” to their lead single, “Scarecrow” (available on iTunes June 23rd). All of the songs were filled with tight harmonies and haunting melodies.

When sat down with Alex and Sierra, Sierra Deaton explained that the songwriting process was, “literally just hanging out with a bunch of friends, writing songs…it was like a musical summer camp.” This summer camp took place in Malibu, and included songwriters like John Legend and Jason Mraz. Alex Kinsey compared writing in Los Angeles to writing in Florida, where the two are initially from. “The California lifestyle and mindset, and the people out here are real similar to the people in Florida…it’s just busier out here.”

That busy life-style seems to be exactly what the future has in store, as they get ready to release their debut album later this summer.

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