Two incredible women with completely different styles of music, back-to-back at the Laughing Goat Coffeehouse. We walked in, wary because the coffeehouse hosts all kinds of music (I have nothing against old country bluegrass, but it just isn’t my jam)… But as I ordered my coffee it was immediately obvious I woul be staying for a while.
We sat and watched, listened, and experienced. Molly’s voice was siren-like, and her eyes strayed from face to face to ceiling. She lost herself into the music sometimes. Her hair was wild, and her sound was unconstrained.
Kristen is from Nashville. Her hair was tossed to one side, dark and curly and her smile easy. She wore business-like attire and her poster told us she was a “one-person Indie/Rock band.” Her warm-up had us gaping. I leaned forward, only realizing songs later that I was sitting on the edge of my chair. Kristen told the audience to clap, showed us how to sing a verse. The sound of the entire audience joining in was incredible. Many voices together somehow sound like one immensely powerful voice. We laughed at the absurdity of her abilities to manipulate a loop pedal, and were hooked completely. She was compelling, yet perhaps not as raw as Molly. Two sides of a coin.
Watching the audience member’s eyes and reactions… People looked at each other at times almost shyly, like they were looking for a model reaction. I think the raw humanity, like in Lilavati’s storytelling, made people uncomfortable and perhaps on shaky ground personally. We don’t know who we are, stripped down. We want to be like other people.
Songs are storytelling, after all. Listening to the words is fascinating, but so is releasing any intellect ion and simply absorbing the melody.