Sunday, March 13, 2011

Valenitne Wolfe and Marcus at Oh Cha

What a unique evening!  Mark, Lindy and I started at Bellacino's, then visited some of the galleries downtown, and finally headed to Oh Cha tea house set on the shores of the Reedy River, where we found all kinds of eclectic individuals: artists, writers, photographers, musicians, steampunk, gothic folks, 1950's style pin-up girls. We had a great time seeing James and Ben, Elizabeth and Tesla & I had a chance to give Ben the beeswax collage I made for him but alas, I forgot to take photos of it. My camera batteries also died so I only was able to get this one photo of the show.
  We were all gathered to see Valentine Wolfe with guest performer, Marcus Hill, who plays Middle Eastern drums. What an innovative performance! They started out with Dead Can Dance and then played everything from torch songs to Baroque to a Tudor piece written by Henry the VIII. Of course they also played some of their songs form their own CD's, Five Nocturnes and The Crimson Masquerade.  Probably one of the most eclectic shows I've ever seen. Braxton has proven me wrong.  When I first met him, I thought only cellists could tease such a range of sounds from their instrument, but all night long, Braxton stretched the limits of what sounds anyone could imagine emanating form a bass. Sarah's operatic voice was perfect for the diverse melodies and the drumming by Marcus put it over the top in the intimate, jam packed tea shop. I could watch Braxton for hours because of way he plays his bass to evoke a range of tones and melodies exploring the pieces with depth, emotion and at time surprise.  The solos were stunning.
Sarah looked as dramatic as always, dressed in one of her own creations and I overheard your women commenting on how they liked men in kilts.And the audience dressed to match. Just about everyone who walked in the door was unique in their own way, yet the room was all inclusive, all welcoming, despite the jam-packed supercharged atmosphere. Everyone there was mesmerized, 100% per cent present in the moment, all eyes on Sarah, Braxton and Marcus.
James mentioned that the experience was like an "art house film," and that it was, I felt like I was in some subculture scene out of a film on the order of The Hunger. I kept expecting Bowie to walk in out of the rain to join the standing room only crowd, and nod to the trio with an appreciative subtle grin of acknowledgment on his face.   

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