Sunday, August 22, 2010

Ben Meyercord's Live Music Picks for Sunday, August 22nd

Hello Dear Readers,

Yesterday I ended up working a 12 hour day. After my super long day yesterday it kinda just did me in. I did not see any shows. I hope you guys did though. Anyway, today is the last day of the Portland Folk Fest and quite honestly it is by far the best day (in my opinion). On the website they have descriptions of every single act playing the festival and they are all written by people who can actually write about music articulately. See.

The Woods is having a show with Michael Hurley, Tara Jane O'Neil, Raymond Byron & The White Freighter (formerly Castanets, Rebecca Gates, and Amy Annelle. part of the Portland Folk Fest. This is the only part of the festival that I have seen has food built into the ticket price. Yes, this is a BBQ setting. It is sponsored by Kill Rock Stars & hosted by Stooping Bear, and will have produce from Groundwork Organics and other local organic growers. But what is really cool here is the music. Michael Hurley is an older guy that has been doing folk for a long time. I know him from singing on the last Alela Diane record. TJO is awesome she kinda blurs lines between folk and more experimental forms of music. Rebecca Gates was in that band The Spinanes. I saw her open up for Stereolab when I lived in Texas. Pretty good stuff. I am not familiar with Amy Annelle, but people have written positive things about her. The show is $10 and starts at 2:30 PM.

Bar Bar (the new part of Mississippi Studios) is having a show with Marty Marquis and Chris Robley. Marty Marquis, aside from having a pretty cool alliterate name, is probably best known for being in Blitzen Trapper. He is also a pretty good songwriter and his voice is really cool in that kind of gravely way. Chris Robely is usually backed by his band The Fear of Heights. It think today he might scale it back a bit. Or not. I don't know for sure. The show is FREE and starts at 3 PM.

Doug Fir is having a show with Sallie Ford & The Sounds Outside and Adam Shearer (of Weinland). This is part of Portland Folk Fest. I think that Doug Fir has been doing regular porch shows under the name Pickin' on Sundays for awhile now. I think that this just happens to be the folk fest one. I don't think that Sallie Ford and her band are particularly folk. They are good though. The upright bass makes it look folky. Adam Shearer on the other hand sounds pretty folk at times. I think it was Jeff Tweedy of Wilco who said that a lot of rocks songs were just folk if you took away most of the instruments. The show is FREE and starts at 3 PM.

Lola's Room is having a show with The Builders & The Butchers and Pancake Breakfast. Both of these bands "kill it" live. They both have an energy that is hard to fake. I believe that The Builders & The Butchers are making the rounds on the McMenamin's tour circuit. Which means that there will be several opportunities to see them play for FREE. The show is FREE and starts at 7 PM.

Doug Fir is having a later show (not on the porch) show with Loch Lomond, Myshkin's Ruby Warblers, and Mbilly. Loch Lomond is a band that I used to think of as kind of chamber pop. In recent times they have been changing into more of a traditional rock band. Though with the very distinct voice of Richey Young and his tendency to write lyrics that sound insane, I doubt they will ever be a traditional rock band. I have never heard of Myshkin or the Ruby Warlblers that are in Myshkin's possession. I have heard and seen Mbilly, he is kinda folky kinda country. I like his myspace headline, "appealing stage presence and glib onstage patter". Quite the boaster. The show is $10 and starts at 9 PM.

Holocene is having a show with Thao, Mirah, Laura Gibson, and Amy Annelle. This is part of the Portland Folk Fest. Man this show looks good. I was lucky enough to see the last time Mirah and Thao collaborated in Portland. It was pretty awesome. Both of them brought band members and learned each other's music. It was really cool. And really good. They are doing something similar tonight, except they are trying to make it minimal. Or "mostly acoustic". Given how big these two usually sound (especially Mirah), I am curious as to how minimal it will actually be. Then there is the lovely Laura Gibson. She has a gentleness the just seems to warm listeners over. She sometimes has cool arrangements but often doesn't need them. Her songs are pretty folky. I very good fit for the festival. And then there is Amy Annelle just in case you did not make it out to the BBQ at The Woods earlier. The show is $14 and starts at 9 PM.

Rontoms is having a show with Celilo, Lee Corey Oswald, Winterhaven, Future Historians, Ezza Rose, and Leonard Mynx. This is also part of the Portland Folk Fest. There are so many people playing this thing. With the exceptions of Future Historians I know them all personally. This is some good times. As you might expect from a folk festival, there will be some folkiness going one. But it there is a spectrum of the genre, so not all of these bands will sound similar. It takes the FREE Sunday show the next level. The show is FREE, of course, and starts at 7:30 PM.

Ella Street Social Club is having a show with Harlowe & The Great North Woods, Brittain Ashford, and Pat Hull (Connecticut, Brooklyn, Chico). I don't know the music of Harlowe & The Great North. I see that they are friends with Pat Hull, another person whose music I am unfamiliar with. I see also that Harlowe & Co. are friends with Brittain Ashford. I am friends with her. She has songs that, if my memory is correct, are filled to the brim with longing and heart ache. I guess that when you spend your time switching sides of the cost, that the other side always looks better and you develop chronic longings. Perfect for a musician. The show is $5 and starts at 9 PM.

If you see me at any of these shows please say "Hi"

-Ben


Laura Gibson will be playing Holocene tonight as part of Portland Folk Fest. Nice.