So one of the original intentions of this blog was to track concerts I go to and music I listen to. The first half of the year is almost over and I have failed miserably. I really do want a record of the shows I've seen, so I'm going to attempt to backtrack a bit.
If you're not one who goes to concerts or follows music, here's a nugget of info you might not know - before embarking on a major tour, most artists do some warm up dates - shows at smaller venues intended to give the band a chance to gel and work out the kinks in the new songs. This was the gist of this Patty Griffin show.
I first discovered Patty when she was doing a sparsely attended in-store at Borders on Michigan Avenue behind her debut "Living With Ghosts". I showed up on the strength of a recommendation in the Reader, but having not previously heard her music. I was instantly hooked. She played Schubas a number of times over the next few years, but I always had some other pressing commitment, and I didn't get a chance to see her again until she was playing larger venues (The Park West in Chicago) on the 1000 Kisses tour. So, an opportunity to finally see her at my favorite Chicago venue, even though she's outgrown it, was an awesome prospect.
So, 4+ months later, what do I remember about this show? First, Ryan Bingham opened. Never heard of him, really liked him, though I don't have a very clear memory of what he was all about. Loud, hard, country-folk-rock if I remember correctly. Almost bought a CD, but didn't.
Patty was great. The setlist was almost all songs from the then unreleased Children Running Through (still probably my least favorite Patty album, though I haven't given it a whole lot of time). She did a few older ones (and one really old one, 'Regarding Mary', I believe, that I recognized from an old bootleg I have). She played some piano. Had a great band with her. She was relaxed and funny. It was a great show...well worth it. It would have been nice to hear some more familiar tunes, but we went into it understanding that the point of the show was to work out the new stuff, so there really wasn't any disappointment. She came back in March and played the Vic for what I assume was probably a more balanced show, but we opted to sit that one out.
Some other notes - ended up standing next to a girl I knew from North Park. Always thought she was an English major as she was in so many of my classes, but turns out she wasn't. Her companion for the evening, who I didn't know, turned out to be the former roommate of a good friend of mine.
Standing in line for the bar, veritable Chicago radio personality Lin Brehmer was standing right next to me not doing anything, but I passed on the opportunity to chat him up. Though there was a time I listened to him nearly everyday, I couldn't come up with anything worth saying to him.