Maggie Heath sings lead during a song in their set at this years Roots N Blues music festival in Columbia's Stevens Lake Park.

Alessandro Comai/Staff Photographer

A fan reaches over the crowd to take a photo of the band during their concert.

Alessandro Comai/Staff Photographer

Tyler Heath, a member of the band Oh Hellos and brother to bandmate Maggie Heath, performs during the 2016 Roots N Blues music festival on Oct. 3, 2016.

Alessandro Comai/Staff Photographer

Festival goers enjoy the emotional folk music of the Oh Hellos Oct. 3 during the bands concert at Roots N Blues music festival.

Alessandro Comai/Staff Photographer

Sibling band The Oh Hellos fit right in with Roots N Blues’ folksy vibes

The folk-rocking Texans come to Columbia on Saturday.

By Nat Kaemmerer | Sept. 28, 2016

Tags: Roots N Blues 10


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Since 2011, siblings Maggie and Tyler Heath have been jamming folk-rock style. The Texans lead The Oh Hellos, an emotional folk band with a big sound. The group has two albums, Through the Deep, Dark Valley and Dear Wormwood, and a self-titled EP. Catch them Saturday at Roots N Blues N BBQ.

The siblings take turns leading vocals on their songs, but Tyler typically takes the lead. Maggie’s voice comes in high and clear, while Tyler’s moves through the music with a smooth, definitely bluesy twang. “Lay Me Down” is a wonderful song to hear Maggie leading the vocals. In most of their songs, it’s hauntingly beautiful to hear the harmonies of their backup singers echoing behind them, and when the siblings come together, it’s powerful and moving in a way that many folk bands try to be.

The Oh Hellos’ overall sound hits all the right notes for a folk band. They fit well alongside festival headliners The Avett Brothers. Their songs move slowly and sound soft and haunting much of the time. Intense vocals are backed by a myriad of instruments.

“Dear Wormwood” is a soft, smooth song. It’s also the title song of The Oh Hellos’ latest album, so there’s a good chance they’ll bring this haunting tune to Roots N Blues. The repeated line, “I know who you are now,” drives the buildup of the song until it bursts into an instrumentally and vocally driven section of the song.

“Wishing Well” from their first album is another good song to hear Maggie leading the vocals. It’s kind of sad, but the groove is good and the backup vocals swell together to create an aching harmony.

The Oh Hellos play on Saturday at 4 p.m., so it’s a great concert to break up your day. Sit and sway to the powerful, folksy vocals and clap with the music. They’re guaranteed to be a nice, chill concert, so grab some BBQ and hang out with The Oh Hellos at the Missouri Lottery Stage.

Check out our playlist to get you grooving to the right tunes. It has a mix of The Oh Hellos’ best hits with their most moving lyrics and best sounds, as well as a few songs by other bands similar to them, if you want to get into that sort of thing.

Go forth and folk-rock your hearts out, Roots N Blues-ers.

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