Saturday, November 15, 2008

Four poets, two revivals, and a request for less beer and more whiskey

I've been meaning to write up a few shows for a while, but time hasn't really allowed for it. That's where it really benefits everyone that no one reads this blog anyway.

First off, almost 2 months ago now, was the Junkyard Ghost Revival. This is the fantastic spoken word tour that made the rounds for about 6 weeks across this nation. Although many guests joined the tour at various stops, the Boulder incarnation of this show featured Derrick Brown, hometown favorite Andrea Gibson, Anis Mojgani, and Buddy Wakefield. I was primarily there for Buddy Wakefield, followed by Andrea Gibson, and otherwise knew little about the other two. What we got was an awesome night of spoken word performance. (Called Slam Poetry by some, but it seems that word is out of vogue these days, which is just fine by me.) The great thing about this night was the great diversity of performances - something most wouldn't expect from a show with four spoken word artists. Nonetheless, no one disappointed. Anis showcased his strong suit, which is a quieter and maybe more introspective tone, while Derrick Brown often jumped back and forth over the line between poetry and some...sort...of...performance art or something. It's quite a unusual style, at least from my other experiences, and I was impressed by his near effortless transitions between humor and deeper emotions. Buddy Wakefield and Andrea Gibson, who possess what I consider slightly similar styles really brought out some incredible pieces and reinforced my whole reason for being there. One particular piece by Andrea Gibson, that I think she indirectly dedicated to Buddy, might have been the highlight of the night. It's one of those great experiences that I can't even recall that much about, and since I don't think there is even a youtube link of it, you'll just have to trust me that it was sensational.

Next up was the Revival Tour, featuring Ben Nichols, Chuck Ragan, Tim Barry, Jon Snodgrass, and Austin Lucas. For this collection of songwriters, my primary interests were in Ben Nichols and Jon Snodgrass, lead/co-lead singers of Lucero and Drag the River, respectively. Safe to say that this night did not disappoint. The highlights were probably as much Ben Nichols' in between song banter as anything. At one point, someone brought him a PBR, to which he thanked them but noted that beer just fills him up and thus, whiskey would be preferable. As usual, Jon from DTR played some great songs, although I wasn't close enough to request "Crocodile," which was a shame.

Don't know how long it will stay up, but a set list and recording of the show has been posted on the Lucero message board here and here. The first posting is an expired download link I think and the second is a FLAC download, which I think should be of better quality for those of you who still fight the futile fight to get good sound quality out of digital recordings. If you can get it, there's a great cover of Townes' "Colorado Girl" that Ben sings.

While I wasn't there to experience the event, sounds like the Lubbock Revival tour was quite the spectacle. A brief description of it can be found here. However, I don't think this does it justice, so hopefully you can find someone who went to describe the madness of the night.