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Mixed Bag

Posted on March 6th, 2005

When I finally got to bed last night (grr drunkards down the hall…), I felt a certain calm about me; Black Forest was behind me and, with it, a lot of stressing out.

I’ll start with the first night (Friday), though. The lineup was fairly extensive, ranging from a bunch of solo acts, a duet here and there, and some full-fledged bands. Unfortunately, I missed about the first hour or so because I was writing my business midterm over at Laurier (grr Friday night exams), so I didn’t catch the first few acts. I heard that Rodney did an awesome job on a Chopin (pronounced ‘Show-pan’ – not ‘Chop-in’ for the non-Classical music people). Thankfully the show was taped! A random assortment of SPUCers got on stage between then and the final two acts.

A couple of full bands finished off the night: Antigen and INTRANSIT. The only bad thing that I could say about Antigen was that Sev’s high-frequency vocals were too loud, so it was almost piercing to hear.. otherwise, they were great! They managed to sell a buttload of merchandise afterwards, too. I really enjoyed INTRANSIT (who has one of my Embassy buddies, Corey, in it!) because they had a really diverse set and it was pretty up-close and personal. They said that there was a lot of local talent in the K-W region, and these guys are definitely one of them!

Then it was stress-out night… er.. Saturday night. Generally speaking, Saturday draws a larger crowd than Friday, possibly because the Friday-night party crews are taking a night off. I was really looking forward to performing in front of a large crowd. And by “really looking forward to”, I actually meant “really not looking forward to at all.” Ugh.. talk about nervousness times a bajillion! It wasn’t so long ago that I was apprehensive about playing at Chapel, which has maybe 20 people, at best… over a hundred people was probably a tad out of my league!

This night featured a couple of acts who are long-standing traditions at Black Forest: Sibling Rivalry and our very own SPUCstreet Boys. I was really surprised about how quickly the place filled up; there was only standing room ten minutes after the show started! Duets were the story for the first hour or so: April and Jess, Adam and Jeremy, etc.. I was not really paying too much attention because I was slated to be on stage at 8:45. From what I heard directly, and from others, they were really good. Then, from backstage, I see Rodney give me the nod and.. on we went!

The six of us (Rodney Milligan, Andrew Grieve, Patricia Trudell, Dave O’Grady, Mike Elg, and myself) stormed on stage and set up as quickly as possible. Meanwhile, the MC took the liberty to stall by talking about members of the band and how one of them happens to appear on the front of a “popular St. Paul’s t-shirt.” That punk. After we make sure that the mics were working, we started our set:

1. Evanescence – Bring Me To Life. Patricia did vocals, Mike was doing the rapping part, and I did backup for Patricia while handling the electric. Rodney was manning the piano, Mike was on bass, and that left Dave behind the drumset. I couldn’t hear myself for the first half of the song, so I could only hope that I was singing the right notes.. having an amp blaring behind me does something to my hearing, I guess. Eventually, I moved a lot closer to the mic and I think I heard myself, which allowed me to ensure that I was in the right key haha. All in all, it was a solid start.

Between songs, I introduced the name of the band: Stale Brownies. It was sorta kept on the downlow but, somehow, word got around and we saw some signs out in the crowd hahaha… It was nice to see some token support hehe. Thanks to whoever made those signs πŸ™‚

2. Coldplay – Clocks. Andrew came on stage to do vocals for this one, and Patricia moved to the keyboard. I did some backup vocals. Aside from a little volume blip on my part (I really should have plugged the amp into the DI.. oh well), the song was smooth.

With everyone on stage, we went around to name the members while Dave and Mike did a little jingle… oh those silly FASS guys.. πŸ™‚

3. U2 – With Or Without You. Rodney jumped to keyboard and Patricia sang backups. I don’t really remember much of the song, but that means that I also don’t remember anything that went wrong with it. So, I will assume that it, too, was well done.

Now Andrew took a minute to recover his voice and we needed to stall for a bit. So we randomly had a little fun with a song called “Big Rig”.. I pulled out an acoustic and Patricia sang a silly little song counting the wheels of a big rig (all 18 of them) in a bunch of different ways. The best was in Roman numerals: “i, ii, iii, iv, v, vi, …” Very impressive stuff! I think it got the crowd into the show a bit more, too!

4. Muse – Apocalypse Please. This was somewhat of a random pick. I started listening to Muse before Christmas and this song was.. epic. Rodney and I agreed that, if we could pull it off, the song would be amazing to perform. Rodney went back to the piano and did backups, and Patricia hopped off stage. I had the pleasure of playing one note on the electric, but I had some fun with the keyboard and backups, too. Good times!

5. Stale Brownies – Over the Rainbow. Our one ‘original’ for the set. Basically, it was a parody, poking jabs at some of the things about the college. It was just Patricia and Rodney on this, and I think this one garnered the best reaction from the crowd. I re-wrote the lyrics to it to make it more humourous, less political, and less bitter.. if you’re interested in getting your hands on the lyrics, too bad! πŸ˜›
6. ABBA – Waterloo. We wanted to end it off on an upbeat song, and this one was fun, random, and upbeat. We got the crowd clapping and I think we had a good time with it. I goofed up one beat over the course of the song, but I don’t think anyone noticed. Yay! πŸ™‚

All things considered, I was happy with the performance. After all, the group only practiced twice, each for an hour. It all came together at the end, and it was definitely an experience to remember.

6 Responses to “Mixed Bag”

  1. Rodney Says:

    Yes, I was extremely pleased with our act. Kudos to everyone in the group on a job well done.

  2. Jasmine Says:

    Hey Justin,
    I’m sorry I missed your performance – it sounds like it was really good and a lot of fun! Maybe I’ll get a chance to hear the recording sometime.

  3. Justin Says:

    Yes indeed.. I think that we were fortunate enough to have some very talented individuals (yourself included, Rodney!) with us, which made all of our lives easier! Thanks a ton for all of the time and energy that you put into it πŸ™‚

    No worries about missing the show, Jazz.. I can always show it to you whenever I get my hands on the recording. And you’re right: it was a lot of fun! πŸ™‚ See ya tomorrow!


  4. Tony Says:

    I’d like the lyrics for your version of Over the Rainbow, please. Great job with it πŸ™‚

  5. Justin Says:

    Thanks a lot, Tony! You can find the lyrics to our ‘Over the Rainbow’ parody here!

  6. Emily Says:

    I love the song “Waterloo”! …and for a long time, that’s the only exposure I had to anything related to any Waterloo–even though apparently there is a Waterloo in my homestate… hm.

    I prefer “chop-in” to “show-pan.”

    This concert sounded like so much fun!!!

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