Is it Tuesday? Yes, it's Tuesday. Catching up late on the weekends musical happenings.
I caught two wonderful local shows this past weekend. On Saturday night, it was a double bill with Topeka and Walter Clevenger & the Dairy Kings at the Bamboo Terrace restaurant in Costa Mesa, while on Sunday I enjoyed an afternoon show at with Irish music outfit Gypsy's Kiss at the Harp Inn - also in C.M.
Topeka features singer-songwriter-guitarist Fletcher Harrington (of Cowboy Buddha fame), lead guitarist Brit Collins (of Moonhead) and singer Tanya Livingstone (of Blind Ruby). Performing excellent songs from their first CD, "Land Rush," as well as material from Fletcher's most recent solo CD, it was a powerful show. This is alt country with heart. The blending of voice and layers and arrangements worked strongly on Saturday night. I'm hooked. Information: www.lopie.com.
Next was the always rocking-good-time Walter Clevenger & the Dairy Kings. When a band rocks out with original tunes such as "Radio Sea" and "Supermarket Checkout Queen," as well as the infectious "Jonathan Doe," well the night is great. Clevenger is a songwriter whose material draws comparisons with artists ranging from Buddy Holly and Tom Petty to Nick Lowe, but his blend of power pop meets country is definitely his own. And his band is great. Learn more about this wonderful artist at www.walterclevenger.com.
And on to Sunday for a totally different kind of show. Gypsy's Kiss is an acoustic-styled Irish-Celtic music ensemble. The group put on a wonderful show, playing a blend of instrumental numbers and emotive songs.
"Star of the County Down" and "Black Velvet Band" were among many of the group's highlights. The group features the talents of Krysta Townsend (fiddle), Fred Salmon (electric bass, guitar), Kevin Moran (guitar, whistle, vocals), Heidi Kuyper (lead vocals) and Heidi Halbur (wooden flute, whistles).