Monday, February 9, 2015

Adventures in Audio-Catch Up: Part I: Adventures 7-10

Continuing on my quest to catch live music at 50 different venues:

Yesterday the realization that I have gone to twice as many shows as I have posted about in my Adventures in Audio series hit me a boat load of busted up drum kits.  I think that I lived with the notion (ahem, excuse), that I had to write some long deep essay about each show, venue and experience, and all that self pressure has obviously led to nothing. Is it Lent yet? Can we give up shame and guilt and fear for Lent this year? Let's give up all that instead of chocolate. Done.

So here is an attempt to catch up with blurry iPhone photos and a kind word or two.

Adventures in Audio #7: Benjamin Booker @ U Street Music Hall, Washington DC

Benjamin Booker's self titled album was most definitely one  my most played album in 2014.  I still listen to bits and pieces of it almost every week if not every day. So blasted good. Not only does Mr. Booker's barbaric yelp of a voice make you believe that he has already lived a thousand lives, but the energy of the music is ridiculous, and the songs are smart too. Every now and then, a line or two of lyric will pop out to be exactly what I need to hear.

So the album was gushing and great, how about seeing him live? High Fives. High Tens. If I was flexible I would add my toes for High Twenties. I left this show a sweaty mess, but in such a good way. I like to think that I just absorbed the music and energy of the performers and the audience and left with an awesome glow. 

Benjamin Booker returns to DC in April to play at the 9:30 Club. From a small downstairs club to one of the most prestigious venues in the city within less than a year? That is Superstar with a capital hell yeah.

Listen to Benjamin Booker

Adventures in Audio #8: Milk Carton Kids with Sarah Jarosz @ The Lincoln Theatre, Washington DC

The historic Lincoln Theatre is definitely a place that you have to dig out your fancy pants and brush your hair for, but this show was minutes of extra grooming. The Milk Carton Kids and their witty and delicately gritty folks songs are pretty stellar on their own, but adding in the beyond talented Sarah Jarosz hits this musical extravaganza out of the park, or theatre. 

Listen to The Milk Carton Kids and Sarah Jarosz

Adventures in Audio #9: First Aid Kit @ GW Lisner Auditorium, Washington DC

Gah, so good.  SO GOOD.

In a perfect folky, dreamy world these Swedish sisters would rule the world. RULE. THE. WORLD.   And they told jokes! Cheese jokes, because that is exactly how awesome they are:
How do you disguise a horse?
Mascapone! (Mask a pony). I honestly still crack myself up with that one at least once a week.

Listen to First Aid Kit

Adventures in Audio #10:  Punk Rock Basement Show @ DC Public Library, Washington DC

The DC Punk Archive was set up in 2014 to help collect and preserve the local DC punk rock history, which is quite the history. I love to seem smaller niche archives pop up, concreting the idea that everyone's story is important and should be saved and preserved, not just the ones that are seen as socially acceptable by the masses. And this loud raw music was such a huge part of my growing up, which I still am doing, and my gateway to going to live shows, that seeing (and helping) to preserve it, in some small ways validates that those parts of my own life are as also worth preserving and sharing.  The DC Punk Archive was recently featured on the BBC, so it is pretty much too legit to quit.  Along with the physical archives, DCPL has programs to promote the archives and the music, including punk rock shows with local bands held in the basement of the main, MLK Library downtown. The bands are all from the DC area, and like everything else in the library, the show are free to the public.  The bands for the show I went to were Nox, Blockhead, and Priests. Katie Alice Greer, singer for the band Priests, said that she started being in bands because she wanted to be brave and to be able to talk about the big things in life. That really stuck with me. Isn't art all about being brave and talking about things bigger us? 

Listen to Priests

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