Saturday, March 14, 2009

Bushwick Book Club, Special Edition, March 12, 2009

Just a quick word on the special Bushwick Book Club performance the other night. I'm not sure I totally followed the thread of how this all came together, but Franz Nicolay, who plays with The Hold Steady (and is involved with other projects) puts on a regular night at The Delancey and this Thursday he asked Susan Hwang to invite a group of folks who had written songs for the Bushwick Book Club over the last three months. The Delancey is pretty much of a schlep for me to get to and I was running late (as usual). When I wandered in Susan had just started. The performance area there is pretty narrow and most of us who were performing were all hanging out, standing right in front of the stage. It was a lot of the regular crowd, but in a new environment, at least for me. It's always nice to come into a place and see a lot of familiar places and it was comfortable to hang out with and play for friends there. Susan's song, based on the novel Flatland is totally cool. It has this minimal, rhythmic accordion accompaniment and then she incorporates toy piano while continuing to play the accordion. Everyone who played (with maybe the exception of me) did a great job. Franz, Ben K. Tom Curtain, Frank Hoier, The two Dans (Dan of Ching Chong Song and another Dan-they played a song in Spanish), Phoebe, Dibs, Preston, Dan Costello, and Liv Carrow (!) were all on the bill. My song was a duet with Susan, based on "What do we talk about when we talk about love?". Yeesh. I hope to get a good performance of that out there one of these days. I'm very fond of the song and it's fun doing it with Susan (who does a great job) but somehow it hasn't sunk into my fingers yet and the lyric sheets always seem to fall off the piano at a crucial moment. You probably already know about the Bushwick Book Club but that's where a bunch of songwriters write pieces inspired by a particular book. It happens each month at Goodbye Blue Monday.