Date: January 19, 2017
Location: The Rose Pasadena
Tal Bachman was set to perform at The Rose and with a great deal on Goldstar how could one turn it down. The first of three storms that week had just settled leaving causing everything to be slippery and wet. As one entered they were greeted to the sounds of Guilty Pleasures in the warm venue. Previously the band opened for Berlin the month prior, as with that performance they played rock music inspired from the 1980’s. This was the smallest audience that I have ever seen, less than 40 people overall.
Eileen Carey, a local country -pop musician, took the stage with her performance receiving the largest reaction that night. Couples were on the floor dancing along to the heartfelt country songs. The feel-good music was met with strong ethusiasum from the audience that loved her performance. With her catchy melodies, warm vocals, and rockin’ attitude she made everyone in the room a fan, myself included. Around the middle of her first song an audience member presented the singer with a bouquet of flowers. During her performance an old man, who I assumed was her manager, was giving away CDs and shirts to people in the crowd. He never offered me anything, but I would have accepted any of the merchandise that was being passed along. Nevertheless, Carey was a standout that night who gave an impressive performance.
Tal Bachman’s concert was the most relaxed and intimate performance that I have experienced to date. Who knew that Bachman was such a great storyteller? In between songs he would tell stories that somehow related to the songs he played. Sitting down on a chair with his guitar and occasionally flipping through his music stand as he would tell us his stories. He started his set playing Aeroplane by introducing it as “a song that they put in American Pie 4.” I will admit it I was a big of the American Pie films and might even have them all on DVD. That could explain why that particular song sounded familiar to me. From there he played early songs from his careers that were largely influenced by The Beatles and David Bowie who were two of his idols. The best story of the night though would have to be when he and his dad recorded a song with the legendary Neil Young. That was an interesting tale, but one I do not believe he would be interested in having someone write about. From there he told stories of being signed up with Columbia Records, the time period where he was losing his religion, his divorce, and a time when he was dating an Asian woman who would refer to him as “Master”. His stories were fascinating which I enjoyed because it made his performance more intimate with the crowd. Musically the highlight of the night was his performance of She’s So High. Heck that was the reason why I attended just to hear this song performed live. The backstory he gave about the unexpected success of the song during the summer 1999 when he was at the peak of his career was insightful. The success of the song took him by surprise but he was enjoying every moment of it. That was when it came to a big shock to him that it all went down hill with the rise of Napster and other file sharing programs. Other songs that he performed that night were The South Will Rise Again and This Beautiful Dream. This was a nice change of pace compared to the other rock concerts that I have attended. This is the reason why I enjoy small venues because of how intimate they feel. I doubt that I would ever have another intimate concert like this in the near future, but would enjoy seeing him perform at the same venue another time in the future.
- 6th time at The Rose venue.