Yup, lots of fun last night at the Acoustic Showcase. We began with The Jolly Topic -- this trio is as close as the Showcase comes to a house band. They played a tight set (if I do say so myself), with some particularly nice contributions from Will Ryan on mandolin.
That's Will on the left, David Keevil in the middle, and Don Strauss on bass. We're working on getting everyone to look at their instruments at the same time... Almost there!
Next up was Josh Beetler, with his guitar, his Mac and his loop box. Wow!
Josh played the Showcase once before almost two years ago. His set has changed considerably -- he now features some of the most flexible, witty, facile guitar playing we've had the pleasure to enjoy, in layers above a vocal beat-box. Musical quotes ranging from Willy Wonka to Bad Company kept us all on our toes, and everyone had a blast, including Josh. We're looking forward to having him back as soon as we can.
Finally we welcomed back Rob Carlson, guitarist and singer extraordinaire. I get an enormous kick out of listening to him -- so smooth, quick, assured and gifted. His music gets to my gut, heart and head. That's a nice combination!
Rob was joined by Jeff Trout on the (5 string!) bass, and Ted Millen on percussion. These guys cook, and they're subtle too, with some really nice interplay.
So, yet again we had an evening where I was tapping my toes and smiling like a happy idiot about 90% of the time. Not bad for free music at the coffee house!