Thursday, December 25, 2008

Open Mic, Monday, December 22, 2008

The cold weather seemed to affect the turnout Monday. As Ben was getting the list together at the start of the night he seemed to indicate that it was a bit smaller than usual.

Crabs on Banjo-opened the show with "Kick Ass Awesome, Part II." The song ended up having a lot of references to "Part II" movie sequels.

Isaac Gillespie, Alex, P, Jordan Levinson and Debe Dalton did "Midnight Special. Isaac also did a solo tune with a kind of slow-ish droning guitar.

The Young Dads did "Telling on You." I really liked their song "I Could Never Eat That" which was sung from the perspective of two teenage girls. On one level it was kind of odd to hear these two guys singing a song that dealt with eating issues and other matters that fill the consciousness of high school girls, but on the other hand they did it so well that it seemed organic and logical. 

The Venn Diagrams. Jeffrey was playing the saw, and whistling....did a nice job on a tune that might have been called "Work Tonight." They then asked if we wanted to hear a darker Kurt Weill song or something more upbeat fun. Most folks voted for the fun. We got a rousing, theatrical version of "Downtown," and most of the audience did sing along quite enthusiastically. A nice set from the Venn Diagrams, who have been playing a residency at Sidewalk this month. 

Steve Stivola. Nice melodies and a nice voice. "Help me keep the demons at bay, help me find better angels to take me away." Steve also sang a song all about the open mic at the Baggot Inn (prior to the unfortunate closing of the Baggot Inn a while back).

Aaron Invisible-He is a high school student it seems....Did a song with Isaac and Alex P. Hard to explain the quality of Aaron's voice, but it is unique.

Becca Hasselbrook played-a song along the lines of "I'm not falling in love." Had the feel of an old show tune.

Jack and Alton (?), two 14 year-olds, played a couple songs, including one that seemed kind of Radiohead inspired. Are the 14 year-olds really that world weary already? Well, I was encouraged that their musical tastes were as sophisticated as they seem to be and also by the inventive electric guitar solo one of them played.  Their next song they said they wrote when they were "like 9" years old. This one had a kind of pop feel to it "Take my heart, take my hand, take me to another land." Another nice guitar solo. One of the best things about Sidewalk is that it's a place where age is for the most part irrelevant. It's the songs that count. It's great to see younger people coming in--who can influence those of us who have been around awhile and also soak up some of the other music that's going on. Jack and Alton seemed to be accompanied by a large bevy of parents and younger brothers and sisters.

Julie Hill - a song called Mt. Rushmore.    "Your lips kiss my cement face and I disintegrate." There was something cool about how she sang "cement face." Then she played "Slow like a snail." "I'm gonna nail you slow like a snail." It's taken me a little while to get a grasp of where Julie Hill is coming from. I may need to hear her more to fully catch on but there's definitely an interesting and personal dynamic there. Will be nice to see where it all goes.

Debe Dalton played "Ed's Song." 

Ben introduced a new feature, The Monday Night Bulletin, and I was glad to accompany him on piano.

I went home a little early in order to get ready to fly out of town on Tuesday. I'll still be away next Monday, so there will be no update this coming week.

Hope everyone is enjoying the holidays.


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