Last night Becky and I headed up to Northampton to see The LADY, Erin McKeown, play at the Iron Horse. We only recently got into Erin, via a colleague of Becky’s at UIUC. Erin plays…hrm, what does Erin play? Is it folk? Rock? Jazz? Bluegrass? Swing? Punk? Pop? Let’s just say she plays good music of all varieties. You can learn more about her at her website. Click on “Grand Radio” at the upper right to hear four tracks off her new CD, Grand, which is awesome.
We got there a little late and the place was packed. Fortunately there was one table in the back. The opening performer, Andrew Bird, had some really interesting stuff. He was sort of a one-man Radiohead, combining violin, guitar, glockenspiel, whistling, and vocals with quirky lyrics. I’d like to hear more of his stuff.
We settled in with drinks and a bowl of chips that were VERY salty — almost to the point where we considered legal action. More people continued to come in and we ended up sharing our table with two other people.
Erin then came on. She’s a wee pixie of a thing, and often it looked like she was wrestling with her seemingly oversized guitars. But man, what talent is packed into that person! Great guitar work, original songs, and a huge voice. She rocked out with a lot of tracks from Grand (though not “An Innocent Fiction,” which we were both hoping for.) She was spot on.
For an encore she played this great little song about Rhode Island that I would love to get a recording of. (According to fans on her website, it’s an old song called “Rhode Island is Famous For You.”
It was a fun evening. If Erin’s coming to your town, you should definitely check her out. And you can’t go wrong with any of her albums. I like Grand best, but Becky is more partial to Distillation.