Stacy Lukasavitz - Writing Sample -- Concert Review - First Person Narrative Stacy Lukasavitz Writing Sample -- Concert Review (In First Person Narrative)Stacy Lukasavitzselukasavitz@gmail.com248-667-8229http://about.me/stacy.lukasavitz@damnredhead
Stacy Lukasavitz - Writing Sample -- Concert Review - First Person Narrative Concert Review: Amy Millan in Pontiac, MI(Originally published on October 18, 2009, as a blog post at thatdamnredhead.net.)Keeping true to my obsession with semi-obscure Canadian independent music, lastweek I was lucky enough to ﬁnd myself on the guest list for one of my favorite alt-country/folk artists, Amy Millan, when she was in town at the Pike Room, a swanky diveupstairs from Pontiacʼs Crofoot Ballroom. Now, it should be said that playing in theBallroom downstairs that night was this angry-guy band that sounds like every angry-guy band — extremely loud, obnoxious, and with a cool sounding name like “FiveFinger Death Punch,” which was was so loud that we could both feel and hear it overour nice, intimate, folky show of about 60 attendees. Oddly enough, in my Harley Davidsonjacket I could have easily slipped intothe other show and not looked out ofplace, but any band whose namesounds more like a concoctionprepared by a goth mom at aHalloween party and whose album isentitled “War is the Answer” can safelybe assumed to be the very antithesis ofthe very Canadian, very folky musicthat I love and came to see.Opening the show was an interesting fellow named Aﬁe Jurvanen, who also goes byartist/band name “Bahamas,” for what reason I have no idea except to perhaps conveysheer irony in being a Finnish guy from Canada. I was pleasantly surprised, however, ashe opened with a beautiful ballad called “Hockey Teeth” and instantly won me over. Hisdrummer was missing, but his goofy demeanor and commanding stage presence madehim make going solo look easy. His vocals are reminiscent of Jack Johnson but he canplay a mean stratocaster. Always one to support the opening act, I bought his CD, PinkStrat, and encourage you to check him out and support him, too. Heʼs really good.
Stacy Lukasavitz - Writing Sample -- Concert Review - First Person Narrative Now, onto Amy Millan. The best way for me to describe her sound is the bastard child of musical Williamses – Dar Williams, Lucinda Williams, Victoria Williams, and Hank Williams – somewhat folky, somewhat breathy, somewhat twangy, somewhat depressing, but everything she plays sounds instantly classic. She opened with a strong “Losinʼ You,” the lead song off her ﬁrst solo record, Honey from the Tombs, followed by a steel guitar-infused cover of Death Cab for Cutieʼs “I Will Follow You Into the Dark.” From there she played a mix of songs old and new, this tour to promote her latest album, Masters of the Burial, which has a slightly sad tone but is nonetheless beautiful. Any band who can play live with a steel guitar, an upright bass, a mandolin, a ukulele, and a trombone and make it sound AWESOME earnsMAD RESPECT in my book. (The only thing that could have made it better would havebeen a successful accordion accompaniment, but they canʼt all be like CowboyJunkies.)Highlights of the show had to have been a spunky version of her Rolling Stone-acclaimed hit “Skinny Boy,” and a bluesy, almost-jazzy “Bruised Ghosts,” which is herﬁrst single off the new album. For her encore, she played my request of the song thatmade me ﬁrst fall in love with her music years ago, a very country-esque “He Brings Outthe Whiskey in Me,” that rings like a classic country song a lá Hank Williams or LorettaLynn.Having been disappointed with my new iPod Nano videoʼs lack of ability to record well inloud, dark spaces, I decided to try shooting some video with my BlackBerry instead, andsurprisingly, the quality wasnʼt too bad, save for my obviously-shaky hand. If youʼd liketo see a bit of the performance, my shaky capture of “Bruised Ghosts” from Amy Millanat The Pike Room (10/15/09) can be found on YouTube.