Friday, February 27, 2009

Antifolk Fest, Sunday, February 22, 2009

Nate Awesome performed in front of a big homemade banner that said Awesome across the top and had pictures of penises and stuff. He performed a fun set of straight-guy songs, including ones about Last Call Girls and another that called the bar his home and the church his vacation. At one point Nate yanked off his fly-away trousers and ended up on stage in his boxers. He played a nice love song and finished up with a couple rap numbers. Deborah T did a set of all new songs including one that she said was about how not to fall in love with a Republican. It had the lines "you can't dance with someone who does not dance." John Telethon was on bass and Deborah's friend Deenah helped out on percussion, and another friend, Lizzie sang. Deborah also had a song in which she said "I'm a puddle on the floor," and another she's been singing recently letting us know that all the people that she loves "are bad people." David Greenberg came in from Oberlin, Ohio to play the fest. He sang "The Cemetary Song," which had a lovely refrain that went "your eyes were like stars that night" although the lyrics changed next time around and went "the stars were like eyes that night." He also had a number about hetereochromia, in which he expressed love for someone with two different colored eyes. David finished up with a song in which he played both ukulele and toy piano. It was a nice moment in which he would hit the piano with the neck of the uke. The song was called Tell Me What I Can Do...(so I can be a friend to you). Jordan Levinson played sitting with a black electric guitar. She sang this tune "Make Your Peace" which has a nice melody and ruminated that "you never spoke well but I always had a lot to depend on...calloused hands and everything I wanted to be." Jordan also sang Big Ole Star, her song about aspirations to fame (I noticed for the first time the line about shopping at the same place as Dee Snider) and Lost Soul, among others. Very nice country-inflected singing from Jordan. 

It looks as if Mike Baglivi finally got the epic rock band/orchestra he always dreamed of. Well, maybe orchestra is an overstatement, but with Waylon on drums, Ariel on electric guitar, Mike on guitar and vocals, and a new member playing a variety of synthesizers, it seems as if Mike has made a lot of progress toward getting a full sound. The main thing is that the band is tight as hell and played one of the rockingest sets I can remember seeing at Sidewalk in a long time. Many members of the audience were soon up on their feet dancing. I've heard Mike playing his songs acoustically for a long time and it's amazing to hear the same tunes with this full band treatment. Mike kept running into the crowd with his guitar. He later explained that he'd bought a 50 foot cord just for that purpose. At the end he pulled off his shirt to reveal a Rush t-shirt underneath and the band played a Rush cover. Everyone in the group sounded great but I was really impressed by Waylon's drumming. That was kind of a surprise since I've thought of him as more of a singer-songwriter dude. But he wailed. 


  1. What about Julie Hill and the Warbles? That Judy Garland cover was something else.

  2. Hey-unfortunately I couldn't make it to Sidewalk any earlier, but I'm glad to hear more about the other acts who played. I heard Julie do Over the Rainbow at the Open MIc recently, and it was great. She's inspiring me to get one of those loop stations.