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at The Rhythm Room
People, people, people – if you are missing out on these great shows, it is because you aren’t listening to me.
I was worried about not getting a ticket, so I showed up just after 6:00. There was one person in line ahead of me, the very nice attorney I met at the David Wilcox show in August. I had mentioned Over The Rhine to him, and he looked them up. I love introducing people to new music, and it was nice to see a friendly face.
The evening started with a performance by Griffin House, not that I had any idea who he was. Turned out to be a guy and a guitar, one of my favorite set-ups. Unfortunately, he had some sound issues – a little hot on the guitar volume and some buzzing when he was intentionally loud. He did a couple of protest songs which weren’t quite clever or subtle enough to work for me, but they were melodic and well delivered. I enjoyed his set quite a bit, enough to pick up two of his CDs (well, it was one for $15, 2 for $20)
He did this song, The Man That Says Goodbye To You Is Out Of His Mind. It is funny, though the humor was more evident live – you’ll just have to imagine the winking delivery and audience laughter in all the right places.
Over the Rhine was everything I expected them to be . . . and more. Really great live performers. I have seen so many concerts in my day, and one of my biggest pet peeves is musicians who just seem to be going through the motions (or who you wish were lipsynching because they sound so bad live). OtR seemed to be having a blast and I got the feeling they wanted us to be having fun, as well. There were some issues with the mix early on (too much of the instruments, not enough vocals) but they got that worked out.
Karin Bergquist delivers her exquisite vocals in a casual, intimate way. You can almost imagine her singing you torch songs in her living room, something I am sure she does for husband, and original OtR bandmate Linford Detweiler (who was fantastic on keyboards, guitar, bass…). Filling out the band on this tour were Jake Bradley, master of the upright bass, and Mickey Grimm, amazing on the drums.
If this group is coming through your town, do yourself a favor and see the show. You won’t regret it.
BTW: I got a few more of their CDs; two that I bought, and two that were gifted to me. I think I now have seven of their albums. How cool am I? OtR also releases all their albums on vinyl. Does anyone still have a turntable?
Cross posted at Vox
Scott Johnson at The Last Exit
You know, when I tell you about these shows you should attend, you really ought to listen. If you missed the show you missed out.
Not only a great concert, but a great time. I had never been to The Last Exit so wasn’t sure what to expect of the venue. Last night it seemed the perfect place for a rock concert. Smallish enough to be cozy, big enough not to be cramped, friendly staff, great bar (where Sparks were only a penny till 11 – those things are…odd), graffitti covered bathrooms…
The show started a bit late, but it was worth the wait. Opening up were The Persuaders, really great sound. After their set I asked the bass player if they had a CD for sale and he told me it was only their second gig. Was he just messing with me? They sounded too good to just be getting together. Maybe he was serious because my brief search of the net (including MySpace) turned up nothing.
After a short break to change up the stage, Scotty got it going. It is rare to find musicians who sound even better live than on their highly produced CDs, but that was definitely the case here. Perhaps the vibe of the room and the feedback of the crowd added to his performance. Whatever it was, it worked.
Robin Wilson joined him on stage to sing Stop, a song that you knew was intended for the Gin Blossoms from the opening chords, very distinct sound. Once Robin started singing, there was no doubt. I am glad Scotty put it on his album, it deserved a showcase.
Scotty finished his set, which was filled with his amazing guitar work, joined by
Meredith Meridith Moore. What a set of pipes that girl has! I tried tracking her down online, as well, and had no luck. I do know she plays every Wednesday at The Big Fish Pub but, since I doubt I would be allowed in * , I probably won’t get to see her there. UPDATE: Meridith Moore
After Scotty was CHIME, a band out of LA. Also a really great sound, good enough that my buddy bought their 3 song EP.
All in all, a rockin’ good time. You shoulda been there.
CHIME, along with Scotty Johnson, Robin Wilson and several other bands, will be back out at The Last Exit tonight for Lanceapalooza. Doors open at 7:00, there will be two stages of music, and the proceeds are going to Maricopa County Animal Care & Control.
One more point about the venue that I definitely appreciated. The sound. It was loud enough that you knew you were at a rock show, but not so loud you worried about your ear drums bursting. I hate when bands are so loud you can’t actually “hear” and appreciate their music. I think, generally, bands crank it up so loud because they aren’t that good and don’t want anyone to catch on. I hate when your ears are ringing for the next three days. Good job to The Last Exit for finding the sweet spot.
Cross posted at Vox
David Wilcox at The Rhythm Room
What a great show, he never disappoints. The Rhythm Room isn’t a great venue for a lot of acts, but for his one-man-with-a-guitar show, it is perfect. Despite the non-functioning AC, the show was very cool.
I met a very nice gentleman, an attorney who has worked in many facets of the law through several decades. A message from the universe, perhaps, as we had a lovely conversation about his work, the joys/challenges he finds everyday, and the path to get there (If there are any Wildcats reading this, he got his JD from U of A).
Many of the song selections, too, seemed to speak directly to me – not hard, David Wilcox songs are just that way – but tonight they hit just the right nerve; Start With The Ending, Inside of My Head, Ask For More….
He had a great turn-out and a very appreciative audience. He was a very appreciative performer, as well, and seemed to be enjoying his job on stage as much as we were enjoying our job in the seats.
I had a bit of an unrelated disappointment after the show, though I expected that it would turn out that way. Life doesn’t always go the way we would like it to, I guess.
I will see if I can put together a David Wilcox playlist in the next few days, I know you will enjoy it. (Yes, I know I have posted his stuff before, but it has been a while)
Upcoming at the Rhythm Room: Over The Rhine Sept 25th
Cross posted at Vox
tuesday, i worked a solid 25 out of 29 hours between sept 11 and 12 to get a new design up for the my company’s entertainment section.
i got home at 12:30pm. all i wanted to do was sleep.
i’ve admired these guys since i first heard “the commander thinks aloud” on kexp.
frontman john roderick was really funny and played off the crowd quite well. the first song they played was “ultimatum.” it’s very slow and heart-felt. i was nearly moved to tears while they were playing it.
i was going to give a rundown of the setlist in order they were played, but i was really tired at the time and while trying to write this, i couldn’t remember the order of the songs. here’s my best guess:
2) blue diamonds — he seemed a little perturbed about playing this
3) carparts — my request
4) cinammon — great song
5) rich wife — from the new album, a more electric song, but sounded great acoustic
6) pushover — their favorite song from the new album at least at the time of the performance
john was a really cool guy. i got to chat it up with him a little bit after the performance. i must of looked like a madman because i was working off zero sleep. i asked him they put a faster version of “ultimatum” on the new album. he simply said, “because i felt like it.”
“fair ’nuff, john.”
we shared a laugh.
“i just wanted to make this a little bit of a faster, more rockin’ album. you never know, the next will be so slow that it’ll bore you to sleep.”
could he tell i was high on sleep deprivation?
they were playing at the rhythm room that night. i really wanted to go, but my lack of sleep caught up to me. i passed out as soon as i got home and woke up at 11:30. to say the least, i was pissed.
none the less, though, the put on a great performance, and i was very happy to see them.
keep a look out for this band. they’re gonna be big some day.
fire island, ak