Sunday, February 11, 2007

"Support Live Music"

That was the phrase of the night, along with "this is so fucking cool."

Last night, I went to see my favorite local band play an absolutely killer show at the CDFuse showcase at Red Eyed Fly. The crowd was jumping up and down and dancing and singing and the energy was amazing.

Red Eyed Fly is a great venue because it has basically three separate parts - an indoor bar, an covered outdoor stage area, and an outdoor patio. The patio was "backstage." It was a chilly night, and I was stationed, as always, far from the madding crowd (i.e., up a couple of steps from the main floor) with B, who was visiting, and A, who never ever goes with me to non-jazz shows.

There were hundreds of people there to see all of the bands.

We got there about 10 minutes before Say Hello to the Angels went on. Early enough to talk to Dustin and Sal, who was sitting in on bass, before they went on stage. It's the first time I've gotten to see Sal perform, and he was excellent. I never got to see Ritalin Kids/Riddlin' Kids or Rubberhed perform, but from the crowd's reaction, it was clear I was very alone. It was a great set, and I am looking forward to seeing them again.

Austin bills itself as "the live music capital of the world." As a pr slogan, it works.

The reality is that there are so many bands here and so many venues that it's really hard to build a sustainable audience.

So, when I can go out and hear great bands with a completely engaged crowd, it's just thrilling.

The passion of the audience, the energy of the band, the sound pounding through your chest, your friends jumping around . . . it's an experience you can't replicate on an iPod.

So, take the bands' charge and support live music, where ever you happen to be.

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