Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Really Listening: Brew Ha-Ha's Songwriter Spotlight Sunday

Doc McCutchan at Brew-Ha-Ha, January 2008. Click the image to see more.

(Check out my recently renamed column on Country Roads' recently designed website)

Why does the forum in which music is played shape how we take it in? Really, it is all vibrations moving through the dust and air pockets until it rattles our eardrums, whether it is created by a lone guitarist or a full marching band. Great songs come in all forms but to me, there is just something about a singer-songwriter performing his or her material alone. When a songwriter is accompanied only by the instrument he holds in his hands, there is a synergistic reaction; the coupling becomes larger than just a singer and instrument. The song has a sharper edge without all the adornments; allowing it to wedge right into you, where a richer orchestration tends to surround you.

For as intrinsically musical a place as is Louisiana, Baton Rouge doesn’t have as strong a singer-songwriter contingent as other musical cities, but Dorothy LeBlanc is making great steps to rectify the situation. As a children’s musician and member of The Buskers, she has taken up musical residency at Brew-Ha-Ha, a locally owned coffee shop on Jefferson Highway near Government Street. A month or two ago, she added a Songwriter Spotlight to the coffee shop’s entertainment roster, and it has been a resounding hit.

Brew-Ha-ha is usually a cozy oasis from the daily grind, with its walls festooned with local art and panoply of coffee drinks on a chalkboard over the register. It’s a great place to pop in and get work done during the day, whether on the shop’s free Wi-Fi (a number of these very columns have been written there) or in the meeting room in the back. Usually, I have no trouble finding a table in there, so it was a shock to see the place filled to capacity with a rapt audience listening to Baton Rouge singer-songwriter Daniel Patterson, one of six artists on the bill that evening. Read more...

1 comment:

  1. That guy taught me French about 10 years ago at LSU.