Alex Dupree is a musician and writer living in Los Angeles. In 2005, he made his first record with The Trapdoor Band on a cassette 4-track in Austin, TX. It was folk music in ethos if not always in sound, with its blur of ambient textures and traditional instruments recorded in a spontaneous, back-porch style. The band quickly acquired more players and a more raucous live energy, and in 2007, Belle City Pop! released their studio follow-up Las Meridanzas. During that time, Alex was touring with dear friends and label-mates Zookeeper after having played DIY shows across the country with The Whiskey Priest and Balmorhea. Writing from those traveling years coalesced into 2009's Crown & Anchor, and the 12-minute title track of that record typifies how his songwriting was expanding to address the enfolded layers of a highly personal geography.
After Crown & Anchor, Alex went back into the studio with David Kline, Kevin Bybee, and Trapdoor band-mates Sean Padilla and Aisha Burns. He was still writing long songs, which were landing somewhere between Laurie Anderson and Neil Young. But the music was unfinished in 2010 when Alex moved to New Mexico, where he'd spend two years re-mixing and re-working the tracks (while also teaching on a Jicarilla Apache reservation and making pizza in Albuquerque). By 2012, Alex had returned to Texas, and Elements of the Field was released by a small label in Atlanta under his new moniker: Idyl. The name change marked a distinct change in process. Where the Trapdoor Band was loose and improvisatory, his work as Idyl feels slower, more deliberate. The new approach is evident again in the solo bedroom pop of 2013's Loyalties, a tribute to songs written by old friends.
By this time, Alex was living in Houston and performing with Bradley Kerl on drums. They toured together as a duo, working out ideas for a new collection of songs, then spent four days in the studio sketching the groundwork for what later became You Winsome, You Lonesome. In 2013, Alex moved to California to study poetry, but work on the new songs continued. Over a series of summers, he would return to Texas and add to them, rewriting lyrics or tweaking arrangements. When back in California, Alex was finding his way into the Los Angeles country scene with a new band, Mister Paradise. Poetry and country music both brought a formalism to his work to counter the cascading organic structures he'd learned from folk music. This is slow-cook songwriting, and today Alex is releasing music under his own name, with Mister Paradise, and with a new country duets project Dawn & Dupree.
His latest full-length You Winsome, You Lonesome was released by Keeled Scales in 2017. His poems have appeared in the Southern Poetry Review, FIELD, and the Madison Review.
The music of Alex Dupree is both poetic and political. Dense, melodic folk…lo-fi ditties that live up to their do-it-yourself roots. – NPR Music
Sounds unfold in ways that are timeless, as if they’ve always existed. Dupree just needed to discover them and dust them off. – Yahoo Music’s Top 100 Albums of 2007
Songs that speak profoundly to a generation’s arduous relationship with a globalized, warring world and the history that brought us here. – ALARM Magazine