90’s night rocked, Liquid Television rocked, This Tuesday will rock too!

Red Devil Lounge open mic 10/9/2012

Dear Nineties:

If you were looking for some of your best songs (and some of your outfits) on
Tuesday, they were here celebrating “Cover a Song from the Nineties Night!” with us!

Signed,
Red Devil Open Mic

If you would like to see all of the photos please friend Red Devil Open Mic on FACEBOOK.

Spirits were high for this event among the performers and the appreciative and large
audience! KC was at his charming hostly best, holding impromptu contests of Nineties
trivia and clearly enjoying the proceedings.

Notable faces in the crowd: Jasmine Pritchard, Tracy Shaun Ruggles, Susan
Heffelfinger, Michael McGovern, Tygerlily McKenzie, her parents Susan and Steve,
and, of course, Yogi. Always notable staff: Bartender Josh Schiaretti, sound
engineer Alejandro and doormaster David Polo.

New to the Red Devil stage: David Robertson (all the way from Australia, punk/alt
stylings), Chris Hatfield (extraordinary keyboardist), Tom Unger (he accompanied
Aldo Noboa and was to be accompanied by him as well), The Mustachios.

Chris Hatfield (above)

David Robertson (above)

Two outstanding performances I want to mention: Brendan Getzell, covering Counting
Crows’ “Recovering the Satellites” with palpable sensitivity, then blowing the doors
off the place with a frenetic reading of “Popular” by Nada Surf, which had the crowd
screaming! And Jefferson Bergey tore it up with an attitude-perfect song that must
be called “Blackout,” which highlighted his prodigious theatrical skills and
showmanship as well as his musical and lyrical gifts; the crowd roared their
approval!

Brendan Getzell (above)

Jefferson Bergey (above)

Before the break: Jeff Desira covered the Lemonheads, then launched into a song
which highlights his writing skill (that chorus!) and ability to connect with an
audience, his “When I Let Go,” with Jefferson Bergey jumping in to reprise his sweet
harmony part from the video of the song (and play virtuoso shaker.) Keeping with our
Nineties theme, KC issued a challenge for someone to perform the opening song from
“The Fresh Prince of Bel Air” which was met more than ably by David “Flash Pants of
San Francisco” Colón. Thunderegg regaled us with his lyrically rich and evocative
“We Kissed Again, Then Ran Some More” in addition to his era-appropriate cover of
Wilco’s “Passenger Side.” Andrew Guevara did lovely guitar/harmonica covers of
Whiskeytown’s “Sixteen Days” and “LA” by Elliott Smith. Julie Mayhew put her sweet
voice to Oasis’ “Wonderwall,” then kept up a beautiful new RDOM tradition by giving
up her second song to Addison Nimrod, who, as always, caused pandemonium, with his
friend Aaron taking the vocal, on his new song “Boilermaker.” Next on the menu,
Brent Shinn took on the Stone Temple Pilots’ “Plush,” then did his “The Sandwich
Lady Song,” a paean to Jessica Nguyen, whose personage and work are truly deserving
of being celebrated in Brent’s tasty and tastefully-rendered song! Peter Chung, star
on the rise, covered Radiohead and then gave us his lovely folk/almost-country
“Estelle.” Collective W took us into the break with passion and pulsing beat on a
sinuous song about a spider and a masterful rendition of a new song that sounded to
me like a melding of Rachel’s solo work and her work with Ian, all power and
vulnerability, now new and improved with pounding backing track.

Jeff Desira (above)

Liquid Television: I think that if you asked them about their set, Liquid
Television, my dear friends from Marin, would tell you that they had a really good
time on stage, and I am certain they did, but I want you to know that when three
gifted, talented and technically superior musicians apply themselves to cover songs,
especially to some of the most musically challenging songs of the nineties, magic
happens. Raw technical competence and confident, laid-back sure-handedness put
across the material with across-the-stereo-spectrum power and emotional grace.
Ruthie Elsom (also known as “Clicktrack”) anchors each tune with authority and
solidity, building songs from the bottom up, while giving the band so much to work
with rhythmically in terms of syncopation and nuance. David Fairchild has quite
simply the best touch on bass that I have ever seen or heard, and his natural
musical sense, his fine-tuned ear and listening ability and his sheer musicality let
him place himself perfectly in every song in a way that elevates it. And oh, Dennis
Haneda, clearly one of the Bay Area’s finest guitarists, who somehow manages to play
the lead and rhythm parts of all these songs while. doing. the. lead. vocal. I am
honored that these three accompanied me on one of my songs on Tuesday and made it
shine; I am even more glad that the Red Devil crowd got to hear them do what they do
so well in the featured slot. Here is their set list, inspired and inspiring:

“Interstate Love Song” by Stone Temple Pilots
“Santa Monica” by Everclear
“Everlong” by Foo Fighters
“Under The Bridge” by Red Hot Chili Peppers
“Possum Kingdom” by Toadies
“Big Me” by Foo Fighters

Liquid Television (above)

After the break: Who better to follow the powerful feature than Brentando, one of
the most powerful singers in the Bay Area and beyond! He shone as usual on his first
tune, then reprised crowd favorite “Bona Fide,” such a tour de force of writing and
delivery! Tommy Phan followed with a cover of Neutral Milk Hotel’s “Two-Headed Boy”
and his beautiful and memorable “One and One.” Torfi Gunnarsson wowed us again with
his star quality, haunting vocals and personal approach to guitar on his “Fragile
Mind” and a new song. David Colón, seen above covering Will Smith, rocked the
aluminum pants and applied his acoustic jazz sensibility and mellifluous voice to
Sir MixALot’s “Baby Got Back,” which you would have had to hear to believe, and to
Oasis’ “Champagne Supernova,” which was invigorated by Ruthie Elsom’s turn on drums
and David Fairchild, as soon as he recognized the song, slipping onto the stage to
nail the bass part and bring the song home! Aaron Ford chose two covers that
responded so well to his vocal and guitar style, one by Elliot Smith and the other
“Waiting On An Angel” by Ben Harper. Aldo Noboa, with a strong voice, a command of
the (left-handed) acoustic guitar and support from Tom Unger playing acoustic guitar
lead, covered what I was told was a Black Sabbath tune. Dave Trevors was the last
performer I saw, giving virtuoso performances on nylon-stringed acoustic of two
iconic songs of the Nineties, REM’s “Losing My Religion” and “Smells Like Teen
Spirit” by Nirvana. I left on a very high note to catch the last train home.

Brentando (above)

David Colon (above)

Dave Trevors (above)

Performers I did not see: Tom Unger, The Mustachios, Johnny Lawrie and Nick
Alexander. Please accept my apologies and I look forward to hearing you and writing
about you in the future!

Nineties night was uproarious fun for us! The audience was really involved, and I
think we all got to play some inspiring music, and some of that inspiration is going
to find its way into the music we do in the weeks to come. I’ll be here for those
exciting and creative nights and I look forward to seeing you here, too!

Bloggishly,
Alan

Alan Monasch (above)

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