March 29, 1995 |
"My God, there's a little girl there!" exclaimed Francis Dunnery in a thick Irish accent from the stage of the Tin Angel on Monday night. He was eyeing a couple at the front table who had brought their daughter to the irreverent singer-songwriter's show. "That's half my show gone there. Put some earplugs in!" he continued, only half-joking. Thankfully, Dunnery didn't let her presence spoil his fun. He peppered a two-hour set of acoustic songs with off-color comments, uproarious observations and very personal stories.
July 27, 1998 |
I assume my wife's typical on this point: When we can palm the kids off on a sitter, she rarely wants to go to a concert (because there are CDs) or a movie (because there are videos). Usually, it's a restaurant (because there is cooking). The exception is Grey Eye Glances, especially when the Philadelphia trio plays directly above a restaurant, as it did six times in three days last week at the Tin Angel. By Friday's final performance, the band had every right to be tired; instead, like any fine-dining establishment, it delivered.
May 25, 2002 |
Cellist Matt Haimovitz returned to what is usually a folk and jazz club, the Tin Angel in Old City, to complete what might be called his counterculture Bach cycle: the final three in the composer's six suites for unaccompanied cello. It's the summit of the cello literature, and Haimovitz, a now-grown child prodigy, has lived with it long, having recorded the suites a few years ago and, of late, played them on an extensive tour of clubs from Buffalo to Seattle. The idea behind the venues is to bring the music to people who might not normally encounter it. One strength of Thursday's recital, however, was that it drew classical-music people whose high attentiveness suggested a stronger-than-usual commitment to being there.
August 18, 2013 |
Sometimes a unique voice - a boldly odd and enticing tone - comes along and yanks the most jaded listeners from their bubble of indifference. Think of the first time you heard Billie Holiday, Antony, Nina Simone, or Bob Dylan, voices that were/are captivating beyond the notion of being merely pleasurable. Count Tennessee-born Valerie June among those vocalists, with a creaking, emotive sound blending Dinah Washington's shushing jazz inflections and Dolly Parton's high nasal whine into an extravagantly funky chatter.
April 19, 2010 |
On the whole, the fine art of stage banter is downright scarce in today's popular music - a shame. Eilen Jewell, the Boston-based singer-songwriter and tune-interpreter working freely across the wide realms of folk, country, blues, and rock and roll, is one performer who doesn't pass up such opportunity. Throughout Friday's set with her seasoned three-piece band at the Tin Angel, she took the time to connect with the crowd and set up songs - worthy endeavors that also helped establish the Idaho native's unique, low-key charm, bringing even her own talkativeness into her musing.
February 3, 2015 |
With each album since 1999's Monday Morning Cold , Erin McKeown has crafted folk music with a twist. Her genre-jumping sounds increasingly have been enriched by country swing, Dixieland, conjunto, and bossa nova arrangements. And on 2013's Manifestra , her smartly lyrical songs had new, stronger political content. McKeown's is an elegant yet aggressive conversational voice, with a passion and poise that truly stood out during her packed-tight night at the Tin Angel on Friday.
October 27, 1995 |
Kolleen Bowers loves winter. That may be why the singer from Aldan dreams of moving to Alaska. "I have a fondness for the cold," she said. And it may be why her first song, "Big Fat Snowflakes," uses the imagery of falling snow as a metaphor for heartache. Bowers, 33, has written other songs with cold-weather themes - "Bon Hiver" (French for "good winter") is due out this spring on her independent release A Perfect Landing. She will perform these and other songs Thursday when she headlines at the Tin Angel in Philadelphia.
November 22, 2007 |
After 15 years as a major figure on the Philadelphia rock scene, former A?s lead singer Richard Bush decided it was time for a sabbatical. Just a little time off to regroup, maybe write some new songs; the year was 1993. It would be another 13 years before anyone in the public heard from him again. "He just called me out of the blue last fall and said he wanted to be a player again," recalls Tin Angel booking agent Larry Goldfarb. "I remembered him well from his days with The A?s; when they broke up, I booked his new bands a couple of times at the Empire Rock Club.
February 16, 2013
Kelly Willis and Bruce Robison In a preferable Austin, Texas-focused alternative universe, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw would be shunted aside and wife-and-husband team Kelly Willis and Bruce Robison would be the first couple of country music. Back in the '90s, Willis flirted with Nashville mainstream success, but the star-making machinery rubbed her the wrong way, and she brought her honkytonk angel voice back home to the Lone Star State and married Robison, a big, sensitive lug of a hardscrabble singer-songwriter who has scripted hits for George Strait, the Dixie Chicks, and, yes, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw.
September 14, 2012 |
MUSIC Kids stuff The Fresh Beat Band will never win a Grammy for innovation. But for little kids getting into their sunny fluff on Nick Jr., they're a pop-rock force for good. Susquehanna Bank Center, 1 Harbour Blvd., Camden, 6:30 p.m. Friday, $39.50, 800-745-3000, livenation.com. Two peas in a pod Though years apart, Wreckless Eric and Amy Rigby enjoy quite the meeting of minds. He's a British punk-pop original of the Stiff Records era. Here, she's scored quite the cult following with bold confessionals - like those on her "Diary of a Mad Housewife" album.