Open Mic Recap @ The Tree House

Last night was fairly busy at Collingswood’s best Wednesday night hangout. We had some great artists perform, despite my poor hosting. I showed up late and forgot the sign up list, so Jeanne had to read it to me over the phone. Maybe someday the Tree House will get Internet access.

1. Cynthia Bennett – Fresh off her gig at Doc Watsons, Cynthia once again returned to the Tree House with a Halloween song.

2. John Brennan – I miked up his guitar instead of using his pickup and I noticed a pretty big improvement in the sound. The high frequencies didn’t dominate his tone like they did before. I liked it.

3. Adrien Reju – Adrien stopped in to try out a new song called “Gang of Cool” and play a few others. The song was great and you should check her out this Friday at 3 Beans in Haddonfield.

4. Sarah Allen – Dressed all medieval, Sarah had a slight problem when the plug for her guitar fell inside the body. I’m not even sure how you would fix that. I let her borrow my guitar and she rocked. She’s playing the Tree House this Saturday with Willie Tapps.

5. John Shaughnessy – John played a new song and attributed the song’s influence to Adrien. He played another song where the melody came to him in a dream. All my songs are written under the influence.

6. Willie Tapps – Playing this Saturday with Sarah Allen opening up for him. Willie puts on a great show every time, except that one time when he sucked. No wait, that was me.

7. George – Did a Foo Fighter’s cover and a few other songs. George should start signing up with his first and last name. I like being able to introduce people by their full name, although I would like to break the habit of referring to everyone by their salutation as in “Miss Sarah Allen,” “Mr John Shaughnessy,” or “Father Jack Sparks.”

8. Jack Sparks – Soul Asylum’s “Runaway Train” makes me want to vomit under normal circumstances, but I hardly get sick at all when Jack plays it. “Karma Police” sounded really good, too. With Jack’s blue guitar, grey sweater, and spikey hair he looked like the Jack Sparks of the future.

9. Dom – It would have been funny if Dom registered dom’ instead of I don’t think he plays covers too often, but I’d like to hear him play one once and a while. His style is pretty unique and I wonder how it would sound on someone else’s music.

10. Transitions – Their R&B guy was freaking great. It made the poetry of the other Transition members seem much more dramatic.

11. Entheos – Tina, Randy, and Jarrod (do you think he hates the Subway guy?) came out to do a few songs and sounded good. Tina’s voice just sails over everything unless I can balance it right. She borrowed my guitar, but we used a bad guitar cord that caused all sorts of problems.

12. Keith Lewis – He played his usual tunes, but we like them. It’s ok, he’s been hard at work coming up with computer simulations of things we probably don’t even know about yet.

13. Ben Garvey – I played “99%”, “All my Dreams are in Cartoon”, and Nirvana’s “Serve the Servants.”


5 responses to “Open Mic Recap @ The Tree House”

  1. The next time Jack Sparks turns his head I’m stealing his guitar

  2.  Avatar

    Especially since yours is broken.

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    It’s ironic that you wanted to hear me do a cover, and I DID do TWO covers … but it was the week you were on vacation. I had been rehearsing blues songs for more than a month for a show with a friend, so when I finally made it back to your open mic on Nov. 5th, I did a couple of the songs I learned.

    I’ll have to remember to bring some out again when you’re there.


  4. What covers did you do?

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    Hey Ben,

    The covers I performed on Nov. 5th were:

    1. “The Thrill Is Gone” by B.B. King — my favorite of the almost-30 we did for the show. I play it like a shuffle, though, while B.B.’s original recorded version is more of a rock beat. Roz seemed to like my rendition.

    2. “Lethal” — my friend, Steven Paul, wrote it and I added a minor-tonality shuffle to it for the rhythm part. This was my favorite of the dozen of his songs that he showed me. Steven plays it with way more full-chord changes and gives it a rhythm much like Stevie Ray Vaughan’s “Cold Shot.” I play it with a simple minor shuffle and slow it down. And, of course, Steven has a smoother voice than I have (doesn’t everybody this side of Tom Waits?).