Three of four scheduled artists performed at The Grape Room
on Tuesday, each with regional and local ties. A good deal of the local audience were attending the free movie being shown on the 2nd floor. I chatted with members of the other bands while opening act, Cranford, NJ’s Jill Cagney
was setting up. I recall having a summery and light Yards and also a Blue Moon. I still have the headache to show for it as I type.
Jill performed a solid 40 minutes, solo acoustic. Her personna is straightforward, with slightly aggressive lyrics and the occasional faraway look in her eyes. Don’t let the sweet delivery of her voice fool you. Her songs have a bit of backbite in them as well. You can imagine the rock star inside her, as she sports a tattoo on her right forearm with her husband’s name on it, and a sun firmly tatted on the inside of her left wrist. One wonders how she might have sounded as a youth. “Riverbed” which appears on her prior CD “It’s All In How You See Things” was the standout song, with a good guitar and vocal groove. Jill sold two sets of t-shirts with lyrics including “If you leave me I’ll kill you” and “sometimes I tell the truth”. She also performed a song in the style of Jack White, musing on how he might have written one of her songs. In Jill’s entourage was Andrea Nardello
, herself a local songwriter, based in South Jersey.
Jill’s show at The Grape Room was the beginning of a tour that will see her perform in Asheville, Knoxville, Memphis, and Indianapolis, before more gigs in the Garden State.
Complementing Jill’s performance style was the next act, York PA’s Katy Glorioso
. In this, her Philadelphia debut, she led her band on keyboard, and did one song on acoustic. The band included electric guitar, bass, drums. The sound is fully built around her swooping,
mercurial voice. The expressions with her voice changing in nearly every part of her songs help to make them memorable. On first observing her music, there appears to be a definite mythology within her songwriting. Easy comparisons to Ingrid Michaelson and Bess Rogers can be drawn here. Considering that she’s released just one EP (Shark And a Bird) and is soon to release ony her first full-length album, Katy is a must-see talent. She and the and follow up this gig with another at the renowned Chameleon Club
in Lancaster on July 14.
Lower Merion,PA songwriter Max Seidman
finished out with a series of country-rock/Americana originals and some choice covers such as “The Weight”, and another which got one guy off his seat and egging on the band. Max mentiond earlier in the evening to me that the band was doing their second ever show together. The sound is thoughtful and engaging. Richie Allen
, he of local folk act The Midvale 9, was present on lead guitar. Their bassist, whose name escapes me, was sporting an Uzimon
t-shirt. Being a fan of the comedy-reggae star, I inquired about the shirt. He actually is in Uzimon’s band, and they’re recording their 3rd album! Max, with ten years experience recording and performing in Philly, last released an album in 2009. I’m aiming to see more of his craft with this new ensemble, which brough some good rock to the crowd returning from upstairs. As I left I remembered to pick up a free CD at the bar, songs by acoustic songwriter Tyler Spooner
, who had performed during the weekly open mic recently. Also near the door was a CD by hip-hop artists The Booster Club
, whose members include Danny Newport and Kapano.