• Crowded House Concert

    Ago 6 2007, 1h33

    I went to see the Crowded House concert yesterday at the Calvin Theater in Northampton, MA, and it was awesome. The opening act was supposed to be Liam Finn, but he was unable to attend (for unspecified reasons), so he was replaced by two members of The Winterpills. I guess I would classify the Winterpills as a modern indie-folk-rock. They were proficient, but nothing that they did in their brief (35 minute) set stood out in my mind.

    After a not-so-brief sound-check, Crowded House themselves came on. The did almost every track on Time On Earth, and a lot of their big hits from way back when. In the main set, I'd say that my favorite song was Distant Sun, which was about half-way through. The balance was pretty good by that point, and the band seemed to be getting into it a bit more than they had been with the newer, more sedate music. Of course, after the main set, they came back for five (!) encores, all of which were great.

    The band seemed very tight, especially considering that they've only been playing for a few months. Well, I suppose that's not quite true... The bassist Nick Seymour has been part of Crowded House forever, and the guitarist/pedal guitarist/keyboard player/etc. Mark Hart has been with them for quite some time. Anyhow, they were great. The bass was a tad bit loud for the first few songs, but that happens.

    The only real problem with this concert was the complete lack of Tim Finn. Not just his person, but also his songs. Weather With You and Four Seasons in One Day are both incredible songs, but they're also Finn Brothers songs, and are apparently not part of the new Crowded House repertoire. It was still an awesome concert. Yay Crowded House!
  • Richard Thompson

    Jul 5 2007, 13h52

    On Friday, I drove up to Northampton with my folks to see the Richard Thompson show at the Calvin Theater. He really is an amazing musician -- at times, it seemed as though there were three or four guitarists on stage, even when I could see quite clearly that it was only him. I don't know if I've ever seen anybody do leads using chords the way he does.

    The opening act was pretty good too. Not good enough for me to remember her name, I guess (since I don't), but she had a good voice and her songs weren't half bad.

    All told, 'twas a good concert.
  • Newport Jazz Festival

    Ago 13 2006, 13h06

    I went to the Newport Jazz Festival yesterday. It was awesome. Who did I see... I guess the first show I really saw was Robert Glasper. I only caught a few minutes of him, because I had to leave to see Jenny Scheinman. Glasper's miking was awful anyway. The bass drum was too loud and the bass itself silent. Very annoying. Anyhow, back to Scheinman. Awesome jazz violinist. She was playing with Jason Moran on piano, Matt Penman on bass and Jim Black on drums. They're gonna be at the Jazz Standard in New York, New York next week, and I'm considering driving down to see them. They were that good.

    The middle section of the festival's a bit of a blur for me. I caught some of McCoy Tyner (pretty good), Marc Ribot (way, way too weird for me) and Sarah Morrow (decent). I also got to the last two songs of the Cyrus Chestnut Quartet, which is a shame, because they were way better than Ribot, who was on at the same time. I wish I'd gotten to Chestnut sooner!

    The end was definitely the best, though. I saw the entire set of the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, doing traditional New Orleans music. They had the whole crowd dancing, which is remarkable considering the number of people there. Then I watched the Gold Sounds Project (featuring James Carter) do their last song, which was... interesting. -y.

    All in all, quite an enjoyable way to spend a Saturday afternoon.