Monday, February 21, 2011

Nights Out

After a fun and crazy International Treat Day celebration on Friday evening, lasting until the early hours, Dan and I went out two nights in a row!  Wow, I know.  Wild, huh?

Nanny and Grandad took control of the zoo the first evening.  We were still tired after the rather late Treat Day festivities, so we I just about made it through an entire pot of coffee before we left for Birmingham, where we saw singer-songwriter Ray LaMontagne and his band, the Pariah Dogs. We've had tickets ever since the gig was announced last autumn, and it was a real treat: the entire evening, going out into the foggy night, appreciating this musical artist of few words. He is famously non-communicative with his audience, however we were treated to a sentence or two before nearly every song!  In appearance, this is the most unassuming band and singer I've ever seen.  The band members, with all due respect, look like Walmart greeters [minus the blue waistcoats] and Ray appears to have stepped out of the 19th century with his full beard and long hair nearly obscuring his face; he could be off to fight in the American Civil War any day now.  Suddenly tunes start blasting out of them, and I mean blasting.  They were, like, rocking... and it's supposed to be folk!  They were joined at different points during the evening by opening singers The Secret Sisters, a time-stopping act straight out of mid-20th-century southern Americana, with sweetly harmonising, spine-tingling voices.

The second evening, the zookeepers were eight-months-married friends Matt and Abby.  They don't have children yet but know exactly how to deal with ours.  Thankfully.

This time our destination was the Yardbird, again, to see Rue Royale.  We missed their last gig there in January, so were thankful to be able to make this one.  It was a wonderfully charismatic live showcase of their new album, Guide to an Escape.  If you've never checked out any of their links I've posted in the past, do it now!  Their music is relaxed, thought-provoking, and unique.  They'll be in the States in June, so be sure to visit their website for tour dates if you live Stateside.  

Dan and I are live music lovers.  We decided early on in our marriage that even when finances were tight, there were two things we were prepared to spend money on: yummy organic food, and [within reason] tickets to music gigs.   Nothing has changed since then, apart from the amount of food we now have to buy to feed the zoo and any other hungry persons congregating at our house during food-time!

Leaving you with a few fun links.  Don't skip them and miss out; they're some of my favourites from these musicians!

Retro Ray...

Secret Sisters...

Resourceful Rue Royale...

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