Sunday, February 22, 2009

Blue Rodeo In the Pocket

Below is what I wrote the day after Blue Rodeo Came to Town. Not sure WHY I didn't hit post! Here it is, in all its unfinished glory. Thanks for a great evening everyone!
*****

Yesterday, I spent the rare overcast and drizzly Santa Barbara day with kids--Ezra in the morning, refereeing Nephew Emmet and Ezra until early afternoon, playing games with Marissa and Ezra in the early evening, and by 7pm, I was beat. Yet, Queen Whackamole had offered us an evening out with a show at the Lobero, and childcare provided by one of Ezra's favorite play dates. So I chanted the mama mantra "fatigue be damned" as I changed into black evening wear, put on jewelry and slid into my high heeled boots.

We arrived at the Lobero at a quarter past eight, enough to enjoy the opening act and settle into the casual atmosphere of Sings Like Hell. When Blue Rodeo took the stage, the audience went wild. Within a few songs they had me tapping my toes. By the first quarter, I was breathing in their upbeat energy and by the time they left the stage, I was screaming and clapping wildly for an encore.

I keep saying I don't do country, but then along comes a band like Blue rodeo who schools me otherwise. Blue Rodeo is country, rock, ballad with some Beatle-esque overtones. A Hammond organ / piano player and pedal steel musician fill in all the white space, add layers of harmony and tasty solos, all backed by a solid rhythm section. There are two lead singers, which our group, during post show drinks determined to be opposites--one optimist and one pessimist with corresponding smiles, scowls and body language to support the dualism.

The optimist pulled me in, and the whole band was in the pocket--grooving and connecting with one another and with the audience. It was the type of energy that connects you with the universal life force, should you be willing to accept. Luckily, I was.

The Paradise Cafe was the backdrop for post show discussion, and Patrick, with his professorial gaze, was the one to point out the yin yang light and dark of the lead singer's energies. Although I had to agree with his observation, I realized that I had watched Blue Rodeo as a whole, and had not spent as much time concentrating on each individual.

1 comment:

Queen Whackamole said...

Thanks for the review! And double-thanks for the play date!