I will admit to not being a good Listening Room participant. I haven’t been in a few months and was always bummed I was missing new acts. I made a resolve to check out last night’s show and it was nothing less than a perfect return to the series.
Matt Lisk started off the evening with a collection of mellow acoustic songs on guitar as well as piano (a baby grand stood at the side of the stage). He whistled the guitar part of one song, dedicated beautiful songs to his mother and sister and even covered Jonathan Vassar’s “A Match Made in Heaven,” which he hoped would be good since Jonathan was sitting right there.
Philadelphia native and the first Listening Room repeat artist Birdie Busch returned for another round of excellent folk music (joined by Todd of Hoots and Hellmouth on bass). Her songs felt more polished since I saw her last time. She even shared stories of buying multiple candy bars to get some cash for her merch, getting gang signs thrown at her and hoping to have a walkway to the crowd like Bruce Springsteen (“Maybe in the third year” she joked).
Birdie Busch – Hometown Boredom
Birdie Busch – Only When We’re Young
The crowd started to thin out by the end of the evening, which usually happens. Shame for them, because they missed the highlight of the evening. Annie Crane came down from New York to play her rustic folk and Americana songs that invoke the sounds of Gillian Welch and Joni Mitchell. Even though she was battling a cold, Annie’s voice was astounding as she sang songs about love and fear and other things. The entire place got deathly silent as she sang a traditional Irish song a capella, the kind she said her mother sang to her as a child. She was by far my favorite of the night and will be eager to check out her new album “Jump With A Child’s Heart,” coming out in October.
Annie Crane – Jump With A Child’s Heart
It’s good to be back at the Listening Room. I will make sure to go there more often.