Saturday, October 03, 2009

Like a folk singer...

Back in August (I know I am behind, but hey I’ve been busy…I just wish I was a faster typist so I can get it all out in an hour) I went to a Brendan Benson concert at Shubas. Okay, many people will ask “who is Brendan Benson” so I guess you can say he is the hugely talented original emo folk singer who one was in Raconteurs. Okay, “who are the Raconteurs”. My friends and I have a cult following for this man. I think Smith picked up his CD like ten years ago in a bargain bin. Anyway, we all instantly became huge fans of his rhythmic voice that has a hint of twang, and his songs that are quirky and unexpected. The gang has caught his shows numerous times at little venues all over Chicago. One time Dan and I snuck into his prep session and crouched in the back like refugees until security made us leave.

Once we heard Brendan was coming back in town, there was a flurry of BB emails among the gang. We erupted when that 105lb man stepped on stage. It was surprising how many people in the audience were able to sing along to EVERY song (even the really early stuff). During ‘Sitting Pretty’, a song about a guy who has kidnapped his girlfriend and is holding her hostage at gun point…trust me, it is a really amusing song. Anyway there is a part where he sings something about suffocating her and “she’ll tell me if she can’t breathe” and if you listen closely you can hear a girl faintly say in the background “I can’t breathe”. Some people in the crowd yelled out “I can’t breathe” and Brendan grinned and let out a brief laugh.

During equipment changes, the audience would yell out things like bringing up his other bands. I guess you had to be there but it was hilarious when he said “yeah I should get a t-shirt that says ‘who the fuck is Jack White’”. Another time his guitar strap broke and he and the roadie were trying to reattach it when someone yelled out (in perfect timing mind you) “yeah..get your strap on”. After a particularly good song, he ended the song with “your welcome” like the lead singer of the Hives (I think).

According to the clock, he was in his last song. It was one of his most famous hits (I think they used it in a car commercial or something, oh and the movie Ghost Town). He was jamming out and about ready to return to the chorus when all of the sudden the lights went out and the sound cut out. I thought it was staged as some awesome closing but then the emergency lights came on and everyone had to be rushed outside. Surprisingly, the entire block was dark. Fucking Rock and Roll!


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