Jack Torrey and Page Burkum are The Cactus Blossoms, brothers from Minnesota who deftly apply the sounds and approaches of early country and rock n’ roll into moving contemporary songs.

The singer/songwriter duo recently released Easy Way, the followup to their 2016 debut You’re Dreaming. On the new record, they expand on the intimate acoustic sound of their first album with an electric production reminiscent of 60s Nashville and Los Angeles as heard in artists like Roy Orbison, The Byrds, and Duane Eddy.

To fill out the new sonic palette in their live sets, The Cactus Blossoms added eldest brother Tyler Burkum on guitar, cousin Phillip Hicks on bass, and another set of brothers, Jake Hanson and Jeremy Hanson, on guitar and drums.

I caught up with them near the start of their tour at the Bowery Ballroom in New York to see how they created this amalgam of old and new music.

The Cactus Blossoms (brothers Jack Torrey and Page Burkum) perform at Bowery Ballroom to promote their new album, Easy Way.

Bassist Phillip Hicks (right) helps Tyler Burkum troubleshoot an amp issue during soundcheck.

 

Eldest brother Tyler Burkum’s Jerry Jones double-neck baritone fills in the layered vintage sounds on the new record.

Page and Jack work out the setlist for the night’s show in the green room.

The band kills some time before going onstage.

The band performs a song, “Adios Maria,” from their first album, as the encore.

This photoessay is the fifth installment in On The Road, a series of visual essays that explores the creative lives of notable musicians, onstage and off.

THANK YOU.

We recently wrapped up the crowdfunding campaign for our ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project, and it was a smashing success. About 10,364 readers pitched in with donations averaging $45, and together they contributed about $467,374 toward our $500,000 goal.

That's amazing. We still have donations from letters we sent in the mail coming back to us, so we're on pace to hit—if not exceed—that goal. Thank you so much. We'll keep you posted here as the project ramps up, and you can join the hundreds of readers who have alerted us to corruption to dig into.

We Recommend

Recent

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.