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01 Dec 04

joel plaskett in minute detail

last night was the third time i’d seen joel plaskett since he released truthfully, truthfully. this could’ve resulted in me leaving disappointed (as has happened recently), but i’m convinced that i could see joel play every day without getting tired of his show. i reluctantly passed on his monday night show (complete with the emergency band), and elected instead to see him perform solo (which, coincidentally coincided with mitch’s birthday – just like last year).

pete elkas opened the show, for approximately his 329472497th show in kingston in the last year. i always enjoy his set, although this one was pretty much identical to his set with matt barber back in september. i still do like the concept (and execution) though: an autobiographical set with the songs all telling a story of a breakup and recovery. he’s always great, so i enjoyed his set. one variation this time around was the inclusion of a keyboardist (i think his name was dr. jeff, but i could be way off), and that was a nice addition. while he was on stage, and i was standing beside ian mcgettigan (more on that later), it struck me that i first saw pete and the local rabbits play with joel and the thrush hermit boys ten years ago – back in july, 1994. oh, time.

before pete actually took the stage, i had a chance to ask ian mcgettigan about his other band (with rob benvie), camouflage nights. apparently they’ll be playing a number of live shows in the new year, with an album coming out in march. woo! if you haven’t already heard it could be love, do it now.

anyway, joel’s solo set provided another example of exceptions to my full bands are better than solo performers rule, just as sondre lerche did. he played his entire set on acoustic guitar, and and busted out his newly purchased tenor guitar (from some kingston guitar shop) for a song as well. his set was a fantastic mix of old and new…i’ll try to reconstruct as much as i remember:

  • he opened with the thrush hermit classic, before you leave. as i’ve said before, the acoustic version of this song kicks my ass.
  • he played three songs from his in need of medical attention solo disc, she made a wreck outta me (featuring a great line coopted from thrush hermit’s darling don’t worry), news of your son and when i have my vision (one of my favourites, and a set list standby).
  • from down at the khyber he pulled out this is a message, down at the khyber (featuring a fun celticized verse, as well as a shriek from mitch to the guys in front of us that “they don’t even know what a sock hop IS!”), true patriot love (during which joel paused when the same guys fucked up the lyrics, and encouraged them by saying “almost!”), and clueless wonder (sung only because of mitch’s tenacious requesting).
  • he only played a couple from truthfully, truthfully, the day you walked away and work out fine (which is really cool on an acoustic guitar as well – and resulted in an enthusiastic sing along).
  • he played a bunch of new songs from his forthcoming arizona album, supposedly being released in february. i’m not positive of their names, but i think one was called natural disaster, one was called i love this town (written after leaving kingston on their last tour, incidentally), and one was called albert (written in a hotel room in texas after overhearing a woman try to convince her husband over the phone that she’s not cheating on him). i also enjoyed the song he played that was written by his dad in the 70s that he discovered on an old cassette tape. too cool.

anyway, that’s more detail than anyone needed, but hey, i’m obsessive. a few other points of interest: mitch was hammered (as she should be on her 25th birthday) and shouted many many things, including “take it off!” at pete and countless “wooooooo!”s; pete and joel’s biggest fans in front of us really enjoyed pumping their fists while stumbling through lyrics to most of their songs; the woman who blakie pointed out who was CLEARLY in need of a VO5 hot oil treatment; the TWO couples who spent the entire show in insanely close embraces; and the leather clad cougar. at least no one sat on the floor at this show… if you want to read a more interesting description of the show, check out meghan’s blog.

and now i can’t wait until he comes back in january…

8 Responses to “joel plaskett in minute detail”

  1. 1
    anne... Says:

    was it “take it off” or “take off your pants”? i was promised that mitch would shout “take off your pants” for me… i’m not sure what “take it off” pays tribute to. maybe we’ll just chalk it up to the insane drunkeness…

    did the most demonstrative couple in grad club history make an appearance, as per usual? or maybe she finally executed her escape plan…

  2. 2
    meghan Says:

    I seem to recall someone yelling “Take off your pants” specifically. And yeah, that guy’s name was “Doctor Jeff,” which was pretty cool.

    Oh, and those two crazy guys? Totally hit on my friend and I after the show. They had apparently mistook our staring at them in horror and awe as “flirting.” I told them that I could not join them for a beer because I thought I had mono (not necessarily a lie, but a good excuse). Way scarier than Ian McGettigan.

  3. 3
    pager Says:

    the “take it off” story was relayed to me through a drunkness filter, since i was at the bar and missed the actual event. we’ll need to get mitch in for clarification.

    and i noticed that one of the crazy guys disappeared for a while and stood behind you for a few songs, instead of in front of me. i guess that was his reconnaissance mission. i had no idea what he was doing.

    was there anyone on the other side singing so loudly as to drown out joel in a few of the quieter songs? or was i the only one that lucky?

  4. 4
    mitch Says:

    I think I yelled “Take it off!” actually, not “Take off your pants!” Not that I really remember… Sorry Anne, but it was the best I could do! Although I do like to leave it open ended, you know, give people the choice of acting upon their own personal preference(s).

    I don’t know what the story is with crazy guy except that I was sort of encouraging him and he kept taking it so sincerely that I couldn’t help but continue to mock him in encouragement. According to Jeremy they also came to the Toucan to stalk Pete and Joel. The scary part is that I think they actually were stalking them (like bothering them and being all buddy-like) instead of being non-dangerous groupies like me.

  5. 5
    anne Says:

    i don’t like giving people a choice… i want them to take off their PANTS. not, say, their shoes, belts, or toques. you have to be specific!!

  6. 6
    meghan Says:

    Huh, I either didn’t see you there or didn’t recognize you (granted, you were right behind some significant distractions). Come say hi sometime!

    Alas, no one was drowning out Joel on my side of the audience.

    Oh, and speaking of Smart Bomb, he did end up playing “All Dressed Up” for the guy on Monday.

  7. 7
    pager Says:

    in truth, you were probably looking right at me but were distracted by the crazy guys. i was so close to them, they kept elbowing me.

    and i don’t think i’ve heard him play all dressed up since the mid 90s. sad.

  8. 8
    Annie-O Says:

    Ya missed the first night joel played (w full band), great, great show, packed. Realy like his new bass player and thought the sound was decent for a large living room party. Ive seen joel many times and really like him more every time i see him. The treat for that night was finding a new artist to care about: Jay Harris. This guy opened for Joel on Joel’s first night and slayed the place, can’t wait to see’em again….??????

    great site, annie-o

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Pronunciation: 'ch&mp
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