Thursday, January 12, 2012

Music (Magic) on Four

The setting - you can't beat it.

Abbie Gardner of Red Molly plays her steel guitar with bassist Craig Akin at Music on Four,
a house concert on the Upper West Side. Lucky us.

It was one of those evenings - touching.  Made so by a talent that is exclusively human - the ability to make music with an instrument. Then, add the human voice - pliant and lilting, blusey and melancholy.

We went to one of our favorite little (emphasis there) venues - Music on Four. Friends Ihor and Marisha sponsor these knock your socks off house concerts - ALL ACOUSTIC - with up and coming (usually) younger musicians. Ihor is like evangelical about supporting these artists - and it is quite wonderful to be there with 40 other aging hippies and assorted 30-somethings in an apartment on the Upper West Side that is a flashback from 1972: the Peace light, the macrame plant hangers, posters, art - I think there are beads going to the bedroom.

But it couldn't be more fabulous. Food, drink and live music for ..... DRUM ROLL .....$20! And all of it goes to the musicians. Then he gets you to buy the latest CD, which of course you want to do; I'm playing mine now. You can't get a glass of wine at Bemelmen's for $20, let alone music and food. You can't even get a conversation there because you can't hear.

Tonight we heard a "trio" that Ihor advertised as the the Super Session - songwriter / singer Abbie Gardner of Red Molly, Pete Kennedy on guitar (ok, wow) of The Kennedys and bassist Craig Akin (wow, again) They all seemed to have the night off so got together to play here. Lucky us.

For Red Molly, think Dixie Chicks if they lived in New York in the Village. Her music has that lovely American roots sound - folk / country / blues mix that makes you either tap your foot and hoot or cry. Check out the song "Hope" on her new solo album, "HOPE."

I don't know much about the Kennedys or Craig Akin, but I'm off to learn.  Sweet dreams.

Pete Kennedy

Red Molly - Abbie Gardner on right

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