I took an interesting walk through the Burlington music scene tonight. I’d been pretty wiped out lately and today was my Saturday. I got a deep enough sleep last night to finally hit dream stage, had a quiet day, then caught an intense dreamy nap this evening. I woke up at 8, got myself together and headed downtown at quarter of 9. I walked into Radio Bean at 9 and acoustic Barbacoa were on stage. Really? Acoustic surf rock? The band sounded tremendous as I was walking towards the club, and sounded better as I walked in and quickly got a drink. It was Kirk Flanagan playing acoustic guitar bass like rhythms, Lowell Thompson playing acoustic rhythm and lead and Bill Mullins Jr playing electric lead. Kirk and Lowell set up a huge sound and Bill worked his way through the fabric they created. About 3 seconds in I realized i should have gotten there at the beginning of the set. They sounded great and Bill sang a bunch of cover songs that sounded familiar but I have no idea what they were. OK, I did recognize the Tracy Ulman cover of They Don’t know, after they were into it for a bit, and it helped that Bill introduced it. Bill could have easily used the music of the other two to launch some rock ‘n roll fireworks, but instead let his leads slip into the songs creating a dramatic edge to what initially seems to be a strong acoustic set. I’m sure I’m not doing it justice, but they sounded freaking over the top amazing and great. Really, I should have gotten there earlier.
They wrapped up at 9:30 and there were two bands I wanted to check out at 10. I headed over to WBKM.org, and since no one was there, took the opportunity to load in a bunch of the music I have received in the last week. Hint, tonight’s local music radio show will contain a lot of music I’ve never played before, and heck, I might totally cheat and play a non-local song by Kimberly White Project just because it rocks.
After loading music into my work file, I walked a couple of dozen steps to Nectar’s to check out the Bob Wagner recommended Yonrico Scott show. I got in, got a drink, looked at the stage, and knew they were not starting soon. I contemplated my options, and took a chance on leaving, especially after Bob said it might be closer to 10:30.
I headed back to Radio Bean to check out Sammich, since I appreciate Dalton Muzzy‘s drumming with Binger, anything with Joshua Glass Music, and assumed whomever they are working with would be cool. They started in with a jam band groove that turned into Ophelia and were off. They played another classic then got into a Floydy Bluesy groove. This turned into The Story Of The Ghost, and was pretty cool though the Floydy ending was even cooler. Josh took the lead on the next one, and truly his keyboard playing had been powerful and lovely, but the clock on the wall made me pry myself out and head back to Nectar’s.
The band were on when I walked in and it was obviously serious music. Everyone was right on and Yonrico got enough notes out of his drums in the first minute or so, that I had to count how many he was playing with. Four. Really? Wow!! Bob, Josh Weinstein,, Shane Hardiman, and the guitar player who’s name I missed, were super tight with a tendency to build the songs into epics. They played some Neville Brothers and The Wind Cries Mary and had a hard funky jam sound brewing. A friend of Yonrico ‘s goes to UVM, so they brought her to the stage to play trumpet for a song. All of the songs had a bit of space in them and each player had a time to shine. Yonrico and Josh had a ripping bass drum thing going on for a while. The guitar player up front on the Les Paul had a smoking solo. Shane’s keys tickled the songs all through the set. Bob played a ton of smoking leads and it was wonderful to be in the room feeling it. They had said something about special guests, so I assumed Kat Wright would sing a few. She joined them for the last two songs of the first set and the band grooved beautifully. Usually, she sings with a smooth even elegant style, but tonight she was kind of belting them out. After that, they wrapped up the set.
Feeling bad about walking out of Sammich, I took the short walk back to Radio Bean to catch the last 20 minutes of their set. A cool sounding song wrapped up and they said it was a Josh Glass original. Rats! Two minutes earlier would have been so much nicer. Either way, they sounded great for the last couple of songs, including the jammed out instrumental ending. After the last note, I skipped out the door and headed home. There is so much great music in our town, and I miss so much, right Swale?, but I’m so lucky to be able to catch what I can.