Emily Francis Prepares for Takeoff

This lady has helped keep Planes Mistaken for Stars airborne.

"They taught me a lot about sticking with what you believe in," Francis proclaims. "I haven't seen many people who have the compassion that those guys do. They pour their hearts into whatever they do. There was a show that they played in Massachusetts, where there was like five kids there or something. And Gared's always said, 'As long as there's one kid there, it's their show.' They're going to pour their heart into it, because that kid came. They taught me that the moment you just kind of shrug it off and be like, 'Whatever. This show sucks,' or you say something over the mike like, 'Wow, look at all these people,' just being sarcastic, that's the moment that you lose that fan. And fans have always been number one to those guys. It's not about the money."

Nor is it for Francis. She's arranged her life in such a way that her living expenses are minimal, which allows her to "live it like you mean it," as the tattoo on her arm reads. "With touring, I get to be around music every day," she points out. "I get to be around my best friends and I get to travel, which means I get to be in a new place every day."

To that end, Francis has recently done touring stints with These Arms Are Snakes and Smoke or Fire. And between trips, she's been home long enough to help other bands she's been working with — Mustangs and Madras, Autokinoton, Ghost Buffalo, Minsk, Battlefields and Git Some — pick up a few shifts at 3 Kings Tavern and also work with Westword's Tuyet Nguyen on organizing Denver Fest III. But that festival, slated to take place at nine venues from Friday, August 31, through Sunday, September 2 (see www.dfesthq.com for complete info), will be bittersweet for Francis. Although it's on track to be the biggest and best event yet, it will also be one of Planes' last Denver shows.

Still, Francis won't have much time for reflection. Her own career is about to take flight. Later this year, she'll be hitting the road with another act — and there's no doubt those fellas will be in good hands. This is one lady who stands by her band.

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