Willis Earl Beal lands a record deal


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It's been almost a year since I walked into Myopic Books and discovered a curious flyer by antifolk musician Willis Earl Beal, who was looking for some "friends & stuff." I'm not sure "stuff" meant a feature-length story, but in July my piece on Beal graced the cover of the Reader's B Side with the headline "super unknown."

A lot has changed for Beal since that story hit the streets, and he may not be unknown for much longer: he's landed a deal with a new XL Recordings imprint called Hot Charity. XL is also home to M.I.A., Radiohead, Vampire Weekend, Tyler the Creator, and chart-topping powerhouse Adele, among others.

Beal's first release for Hot Charity and XL will be an updated version of Acousmatic Sorcery, which is slated to drop early next year. (Full disclosure: Hot Charity/XL asked me to write Beal's bio for the album's press release, presumably because I'd already had some practice telling his story.) Before that happens Beal will open for Chairlift at Schubas on Sat 1/14 as part of the Tomorrow Never Knows festival. It'll be a good chance to catch him in an intimate setting, especially if you missed his impromptu performance at Millennium Park in July or his club debut at Town Hall Pub in September.


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