THIS LITTLE UNDERGROUND
One night last week (Oct. 5), Audubon Park
was the most happening neighborhood in the city, the epicenter of indie Orlando. In what was the most historical, unique and crammed evening in memory, two major acts that would typically play in the top independent clubs here instead made under-the-radar appearances
in informal venues. It was a marquee night with no marquees and, for some enterprising people, a once-in-a-lifetime double feature.
Before me and approximately 49 others, North Carolina indie-rock great Eric Bachmann
performed a very personal living room show
at the home of OW photographer and longtime Orlando music figure Michael Lothrop.
The only degree of intimacy greater than that involves moonlight, serenading and a window. He even prefaced the performance by saying he welcomed requests – if he remembered it, he’d play it. And so the stage was set for a fan fantasy.
Bachmann further went on to say that he was endeavoring, over the next hour and a half, to play something off every one of his records – which, even excluding his instrumental material, span three significant and long-running projects: Archers of Loaf, Crooked Fingers
and his solo work. Because his range has unfolded considerably over his lengthy career, this performance offered lots of alternate renditions of favorite songs, all acoustic, some on banjo even.
One of the biggest crowd-stoking highlights wasn’t even his but a cover of the beautiful Prince
song “When You Were Mine” (which I actually think Cyndi Lauper
perfected but am already bracing myself for the blowback on that one).
More campfire than concert, this experience was the ultimate in live music encounter, as intimate as your personal relationship with the music but rendered by the man himself. The looks on the faces around the room reflected it, and it was beautiful.
As soon as Bachmann wrapped, I and some lucky others simply walked three blocks up to indie culture bastion Park Ave CDs
just in time for soundcheck to the secretive pop-up show by power-pop royalty the Posies.
A little more straightforward than the earlier show, this one was a full-band rock-out, even including a guest spot by local promoter-singer-opener Tierney Tough
(The Pauses). But like the living room show, this in-store performance was a rare confluence of big names
and extraordinary proximity.
Individually, the events were exceptional memories. Combined, they made one of the coolest and purest nights of music
I’ve ever experienced. And it happened in key part because of the local movers on the ground. Looking good, Orlando.
This Little Underground is Orlando Weekly's music column providing perspective, live reviews and news on the city's music scene.
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