Monday, January 30, 2012

Sudden Lovelys, Brian Laidlaw, and Paul Doffing

Saturday night, Eryn, Pooteewheet, and I went to the Northeast Social Club for dinner, and then to the Ritz to see Paul Doffing's album release.  The Sudden Lovelys were playing as part of the event, and Eryn had been asking if there was a way to see them that didn't involve a bar at 9:00 p.m.  I have to say, seeing three very good acts perform in the Ritz Theater with only a few dozen other people around, and the bar open and serving Sweet Child of Vine...that's definitely the way to enjoy music.

Brian Laidlaw was on first and played a number of tracks from his album wolf wolf wolf.  There were a lot of great songs, and Eryn particularly liked a number of them, including The Last Known Whereabouts of Amelia Earhardt, which includes some rather peculiar lyrics about poets, although you can't find them on his site.  Ashley (Ash) Hanson sang with him, and they harmonized well together.  I've never heard the Dusty Porch Sisters sing before, but perhaps I'll have to watch for them performing locally.

Brian said he plays at The Amsterdam in St. Paul.  He  has an  upcoming performance with Alicia Wiley who I went to see at Barbette, but the acoustics weren't that great.  So I'm looking forward to hearing her at a venue designed for sound.

The Sudden Lovelys performed next.  Eryn's favorite moment of the night was when they changed up their set to play a special request and played Dirty Rotten Apples, which she'd asked for between sets. Paige and Danny make me appreciate that local singers in person almost always sound exactly like they do on their albums, if not better. Eryn jammed along to most of their songs, even though it was almost 10 p.m.
And Paul Doffing was the man of the evening. I'd never heard anyone play a 12 string guitar before. It was absolutely beautiful. Particularly on the acoustic songs, his fingers crawled all over the strings. Made me appreciate exactly how far it is from my puttering around to being amazingly good. Peshtigo Fire, despite the fact that he told a story that has Eryn constantly talking about P-shit-go Fire, is excellent and you can hear it on his site. And it's not too often you can add a song about great fires of Northern Wisconsin to your list of music. Eryn kept her eight-year old self up until after 11:00 p.m. So that should give you an idea of how much she liked it.

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