Sunday, May 21, 2006

Strings Attached presents the Beatles White Album in Concert May 19, 2006

About two dozen Austin area musicians gathered together at the University Baptist Church to perform the Beatles White Album in concert with Will Taylor and the String Attached Ensemble on May 19th. The atmosphere was fun loving and casual and because this is Austin, plenty of church jokes were made (by far my fave: "Hey, that baptismal tank sure would hold a lot ice and beer!"). Every demographic seemed to be there which makes sense when you think about it.... even if you've been living under a rock all your life, you'd probably recognize at least one song off of that album.

The artists performed two sold out shows that night-- 7:30 and 10:00 pm. I attended the later one that ended well past midnight. Couple observations:
1) the crowd never thinned out
2) when you're having a great time, church pews aren't that uncomfortable

Even through my stopped up ears (I've had this awful head cold for the past few days) the music sounded great and allergy season didn't seem to stop anyone--not even the artists. A couple of performers had colds, allergies or weary chops. Even so, what impressed me was that the show went on with last minute subs and basically without any major hitches. For instance, Shel Murray filled in for her grandpa Jimmie Dale Gilmore and pumped out a soulful version of "Dear Prudence." Strings Attached was determined to present the White Album in its entirety and boy did they do so-- down to the funky interludes. How the heck did they notate the song "Revolution 9," I wonder?

By far the group I was most looking forward to was Schroedinger's Cat represented that night by Jackson Blacklock and John Pointer. They did not disappoint at all with their version of "Obla di Obla da" and meshed well with the other musicians. They looked great and managed to get ample crowd participation as usual. However, the performer that captivated me the most was Abra Moore and her delicate interpretation of "Blackbird" (for the record, that is my favorite song off of the album). Gary Clark Jr. belted out a sultry "While My Guitar Weeps" and boy, can that man make his guitar sing. I'll admit to swooning a little when he was on stage. Of course, Libby Kirkpatrick was in fine bubbly form with her two contributions "Martha my Dear" and "Julia." Other highlights included a zany "The Continuing Story of Buffalo Bill" by the group White Ghost Shivers and a crowd roaring version of "Revolution 1" performed to perfection by the lovely Carolyn Wonderland. People were dancing behind the pews where I sat on the balcony for that one. All in all, fantastic first-rate performers and they all seemed to have as much of a blast as the audience members.

The links below are live recordings from the 7:30 show. Therefore, some of the balance is off and sounds a bit raw in parts. Unfortunately, the Schrodinger's Cat song is completely sizzled sounding (as are a couple of others). Both shows were recorded. Because my antihistamines were wearing off, I decided not to wait around for my copy of the 2nd show and purchased the 1st show CD instead. I have a feeling that the sound quality for the 2nd show is probably better and you can purchase that through the link below.

Listen to **edit** a new remastered CD will be available for purchase next month:

"Yer Blues" Seth Walker
"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" Gary Clark, jr.
"Honey Pie" Oliver Giraud (of Eight and a Half Souvenirs)
"Black bird" Abra Moore


Links:

Will Taylor and the Strings Attached Official Homepage
Buy the live CD from the show (100% all proceeds go to CASA of Travis County)
Line up from the Show

3 Comments:

Anonymous Shawn said...

This is really cool! I love the Beatles's songs and these are great interpretations (from what I've heard so far.)

By the way - Paul McCartney will be 64 on June 18th... Will we still need him? Will we still feed him? :)

Sunday, May 21, 2006  
Anonymous cchang said...

Yeah, I was thinking of you during the show actually. I know how much you love the Beatles. I still remember that video of you as a kid with Bruce the Shark and you singing Beatles songs. I think plenty of people would agree that we still need Paul McCArtney.

Sunday, May 21, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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Thursday, March 15, 2007  

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