Thursday, March 5, 2015

Langhorne Slim Solo at Jammin Java with Jonny Fritz

We regularly hear stories about how dedicated fans are to artists (traveling a certain amount of miles to see a show); but not that often about the reverse. Well this week, Langhorne Slim proved his meddle in his own version of Trains, Planes and Automobiles just getting to a sold out show at Jammin' Java. He and opening act, Jonny Fritz were planning to fly cross country Sunday morning after a show in Seattle; but an ice storm changed those plans. While Fritz was able to get a later flight to DC; Langhorne Slim was booked on a red-eye to NYC, then drove the 5 hours to Vienna - arriving mere minutes before showtime. Ironically, Fritz and Langhorne Slim were scheduled to play in NYC the following night.

Not knowing this situation I arrived to the largest crowd I've scene at the venue just as Jonny Fritz took the stage. This was the first I heard Fritz, but after his set, I felt this was someone who the audience would like to hang out with. He's personable, likeable, a folksy voice, and composes songs about love and life that we all can related to. I plan on posting a review of his upcoming album, Dad Country - but as a preview - I can't think of anyone that can take a subject, like taking out the trash on Monday, and making that the focus of a workable song. Well done. These are songs with clever lyrics such as "packing the van like playing tetris". I'm looking forward to listening more to Jonny Fritz.

By the time Langhorne Slim took stage, we were aware of his travel situation and were just hoping he had enough energy to play a decent set.  He seemed to provide more banter and introductions between songs (his introduction to Fire was probably three times longer than the song itself); but when he sang - he was all in. For those unfamiliar with Langhorne Slim, he writes the most interesting and compelling love songs - and as usual Collette was a constant fan request. These songs are not sappy; they're clever and interesting and sung from the heart. And his raspy - bluesy voice and modest demeanor give it cred.   I was most impressed with the live version of Song for Sid, his dedication to his grandfather. That song, Fire, and many others he performed are available on his previous album Langhorne Slim & the Law "The Way We Move".  He also played several songs off their upcoming release - looking forward to that June 2015 release and another tour with the entire band. Cheers.

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