Monday, May 4, 2009

Fantastic Lineup at Last Night's Dark was the Night Benefit

In terms of charity concerts, last night's show blew the socks off the Tibet benefit from a few months ago--it was just an incredible group of artists, plus the show kept moving at a good pace.  But first things first, let's talk about the We Are the World moment that closes charity concerts.  There might be nothing that leaves me so embarrassed for someone else as the final group closing song.   I'm always throwing my head in my hands and muttering, is this really happening?  Last night's version was the epitome of this.  About 15 indie kids clustered on the corner of the stage with their acoustic guitars and decided to sing a Seeger song, as down the Street, another group of musicians was celebrating Pete Seeger's 90th birthday at MSG.  They broke into an acoustic version of "This Land is Your Land."  There was laughter throughout the crowd, while others tried to get into the moment and sing along.  Then Sharon Jones returned to the stage, stopped the performance and broke into a rousing performance along with her Dap Kings.  Best We Are the World fake-out ever.

I was psyched to see Bon Iver, The National and Feist, while Isaac couldn't wait to see My Brightest Diamond and The National, and other J Lau was up for the experience and the chance to check out some new bands.  The show was awesome; there was often a huge smile on my face as different artists joined the bands--no one loves performing with everyone else as much as Justin Vernon--his guitar work on Blood Bank and a new song by The National had me ready to jump out of my seat, while his duet with Feist brought tears to my eyes.  He was just as welcoming during his set as My Brightest Diamond joined them on Flume and The National joined for another song.  

But nothing is as fantastic as finally getting to see David Byrne live, let alone have him perform 4 songs that he has never done live, bringing an awesome drum line on stage with him.  After telling the guy sitting next to us that Byrne is responsible for my dancing as four year old me would imitate his videos as I watched intently on MTV, I was happy to hear him later say that he's still got his moves.  Isaac fell in love with Dirty Projectors, although his heart already belongs to My Brightest Diamond.  David Sitek won me over with his stage presence, the hand claps from his chorus, the fuzz from the bass, and the horns.  You can't go wrong with hand claps and horns!  And for a horn loving girl, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings blew me away and made the night for other J Lau.  

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