A conversation with The Constellations


There are a lot of different terms you could use to describe Atlanta troubadors The Constellations. Soul ,rock, psycadellic, hip-hop, and plenty of others. But no matter which term you end up going with, it’s not going to fully or accurately describe the seven-piece band. They blend genres together expertly, taking influence from anything and everything.
I sat down with keyboardist Jamie Gordon for a few minutes at DeLuna Fest this past weekend to discuss the band’s upcoming performance, touring, new songs in the works. You know, shop talk.
Gordon is a high-energy guy. It’s apparent not only on stage, where he jumps back and forth across the stage and slams into the keyboard with reckless abandon, but also in casual conversation. He’s excited about absolutely everything: about playing later in the day, about the band’s upcoming record, and especially about Atlanta.
The band’s 2010 debut, Southern Gothic, is defined mostly by the city of Atlanta. The band wrote and recorded the record in the city, and it shows.
And so I ask him about the city: his favorite neighborhoods (“Little Five Points”), hang out spots (“Star Bar”), and things to do around town (“Party”). He tells me those experiences, prowling the town late at night for something exciting to do, always find their way into the group’s work.
And so I wonder, with such a specific location in mind, is there a chance that the band is going to alienate people from other areas?
“No. Every city has their own sleezy dive bars, their own crazy things to get into. We love Atlanta, and we write a lot about our city, but like I said, everyone has those places. It’s universal and specific at the same time,” Gordon tells me.
And it makes sense. After all, it’s not like Atlanta is the only city that loves them. Milwaulkee, for instance, has a surprisingly huge fanbase for the band.
“There’s a radio station up there. They were the first radio station to pick us up. They have a huge audience there. So, we went up there the first time and the program director had us up there. The first show sold out. Up until then, we had never been out of Atlanta. It was unbelievable. So, yeah, Milwaukee is definitely a favorite.”
But it doesn’t seem like any place can top Atlanta for Gordon and the rest of the band. They played Music Midtown this past month, and Gordon describes the experience with as much awe as he can muster.
“It was awesome to be home and perform. Especially at that capacity, that was definitely our biggest show in Atlanta. There’s always a different vide when we’re playing at home in Atlanta. People connect more. That’s where we started. It’s always good to play there and we don’t get to go very often,” Gordon says.
Atlanta is definitely a special place. Hopefully you’ll see them at home sometime soon.