Brendan Abernathy’s Common Grounds performance turns heads

Concerts are back at local Waco coffee shop, Common Grounds. Singer-songwriter, Brendan Abernathy performed Wednesday night, filling the outdoor venue with live music once again. Photo courtesy of Hannah Smith

By Skylla Mumana | Reporter

Brendan Abernathy, a 25-year-old singer-songwriter from Georgia, prides himself on being able to mesh his life story with his musicality. Abernathy performed on Common Grounds’ famous backyard stage Wednesday night.

Abernathy was another scheduled performer in the return to Common Grounds’ anticipated fall concert series.

Abernathy said he writes about experiences in his life that he feels others may need to hear and about topics that many artists may not cover in their own music. Abernathy said he credits his current performance level to the COVID-19 pandemic, noting that in the midst of all the chaos, he was able to become a better performer.

“It affected my shows a lot because now I had to do outdoor, socially distanced shows,” Abernathy said. “That really taught me how to perform and captivate a crowd. I learned to connect with individuals, whether they’re 50 yards away or five feet away.”

Seabrook sophomore Riley Kennedy said she heard about the concert on Instagram and was excited to come see the show with her friends.

“He looks very comfortable with himself,” Kennedy said. “I think that when people can work with loops, that it’s cool and very difficult.”

Graduate student Hannah Smith said she had a personal connection to Abernathy since meeting him years ago.

Smith said she’s been following his music and not only enjoys his sound, but his stage presence too.

“I really love his style of music,” Smith said. “When he is performing on stage he really likes to engage with the audience, and he really wants to get to know the people who are listening to him and build a fanbase around those relationships.”

Abernathy’s lyricism is reminiscent of songwriters such as Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran. While his liveliness on stage shows a rawness that mirrors musicians like Adam Levine and Chris Martin.

Through his performances and music, Abernathy said he wanted to convey a message of hope to his audience and also hoped that through it all, they’ll be able to learn from his experiences and recognize the beauty within heartache.

“I hope that my music helps them feel more like themselves, and helps them feel more comfortable being who they were created to be,” Abernathy said.