Thursday, February 14, 2013

Ken Stringfellow in Pittsburgh

Playing right now: JD Allen Trio - The Matador and the Bull.
(I bought this CD about 10 days ago during a binge at Sound Cat and didn't get to take the shrink wrap off until this morning.)

All the writing assignments, for the moment at least, wrapped up on Tuesday morning. They included a story for JazzTimes, four CD reviews for the same magazine (I was good and submitted some ahead of time), about three for Blurt and a preview for City Paper. Plus interviews for all of them that needed to be transcribed. Now it's back to the lingering feeling that I should be reviewing everything else here. What a joy it would be to just do that all day.

Last night I went to the Thunderbird to see Ken Stringfellow, with Will Simmons and his band (not sure if they're still the Upholsterers) opening. I missed Karl Hendricks' solo set since I had what's known in this house as "baby duty," though the person in question who I was putting to bed is no longer a baby. Will and the Gang played a tight set that included a guest vocal spot by Karl himself on a song called "Don't Look Back" that's not the Boston song. It's from some Nuggets box.

I'm not all that up on the Posies catalog though I think somewhere there in the house there's a solo CD by Stringfellow from when he was here on a solo tour. He has a beautiful voice, and a lot of his songs were marked by "woah-woah"s. I was expected something a little more pure pop, with power chords and hooks, but his playing was a little less pronounced than that, meaning it was a little more open. It was a different story when he played keyboard. Those songs were a little easier to groove on.

But he played a looooong time. I'm not exactly sure when he started but I'm pretty sure he bypassed the hour mark when I finally decided that I needed to hit the hay. Local violinist Megan Williams (my ex-bandmate from Up the Sandbox) and vocalist Emily Rodgers joined him, Megan for several songs, Emily for one that was sung on Stringfellow's album by Margaret Cho. He also talked Bill Fulmer from the Simmons band to blow some trombone on a song too.It all sounded pretty good.

In other news, I just discovered a couple days ago that Suzanne Vega is in town the same night as the Ethnic Heritage Ensemble. I've seen the latter and always passed up the former. I might try to do both that night, as Vega's doing an early and late show.

I've been getting daily comment emails sent to me that I delete, figuring Blogger would delete all the messages. Imagine my surprise when I saw 14 spam comments of "I enjoy blog you write" crap.

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