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jonathan jackson

If you’ve been scratching your head at the new backdrop being featured on PBS’ Austin City Limits, don’t worry, you’re not losing it. The show has been taping at the new Austin City Limits Live at The Moody Theater. A state-of-the-art concert venue, ACL Live has hosted more than 80 bands since opening last year, and just last month it won Best New Concert Venue in Pollstar’s annual Concert Industry Awards. Last October, Mumford & Sons kicked off the first Austin City Limits taping in the new venue (airing for 37 years, ACL is the longest-running music series in the history of American TV), and so far episodes have featured renowned musical acts like Coldplay and Arcade Fire; this month Radiohead is taping there.
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scott newton
With a 2,750-person capacity, the new facility doesn’t have quite the unique charm and intimacy as the old ACL studio. But, what the new venue lacks in history and quirkiness it makes up for with impressive sound quality, fantastic views from every seat in the house and not one but two truly fantastic art galleries. The first, the Keller Pfluger Gallery, is located on the mezzanine level and features photographs by Scott Newton, ACL’s longtime staff photographer. And the second, the Jack & Jim Gallery on the balcony level, treats visitors to a stunning exhibition of images from the private collection of renowned music photographer Jim Marshall. Any music fan worth his or her salt knows the iconic images of Marshall — Johnny Cash flipping the bird at San Quentin State Prison, Jimi Hendrix with his guitar ablaze — and as you take in the collection, you can’t help but feel a reverential awe at being allowed a sneak peek into the lives of some of the greatest rock ’n’ roll masters in history who are now forever frozen in time at their most memorable. The exhibit is a joint collaboration with Jack Daniel’s, so it’s only appropriate to sip some whiskey as you tour the gallery. ACL Live tours available Monday through Friday, 11 a.m.– noon; www.acl-live.com