This past Wednesday Erin McKeown brought her Anti-Christmas Spectacular to the recently rebranded/refurbished Ardmore Music Hall. The night was a great fun and I look forward to the show returning in the future.
2013 12 04 Erin McKeown at Ardmore Music Hall
Erin McKeown is blessed with tremendous talent, on stage you can tell she is a seasoned professional, deft musician, and terrific vocalist. Add to this her keen wit and skilled songwriting and you have the makings of a very entertaining show.
The Anti-Holiday Spectacular is a 2 set show. The first is an abbreviated concert. While I am not that familiar with her catalog, she was able to mix in some songs that I sort of knew (likely from Grand – including The excellent “Taste of You” and a reworked “Vera”). She also delved deeper into her catalog for the more devoted fan. The set was solo with McKeown spending the bulk of the time on the guitar with 2 or 3 songs done behind the keys. Adept at many styles she picked a good varety of songs pop, rockabilly, and jazz.
As well done as the traditional set was, The Anti-Christmas set was the highlight of the evening. Basically McKeown claimed to have written a Christmas Musical which her theater contacts deemed unproduceable - apparently “Santa is an Assh-le” isn’t the type of song that can be done in a musical.
Fortunately as McKeown stated “You can put anything on a record” and this is how the Anti-Christmas show came to be. Songs feature rewritten classics and some new songs that echo the Christmas sound. She had enough to put together an entire set with a makeshift chorus that I believe featured local members of the Philadelphia Folksong society – All donning ugly sweaters.
Hello Sports Fans
For both of my followers I want to mention that McKeown has a Sports Column she writes for the WNYC radio Soundcheck blog. During the show, McKeown played a song that mentions Hall of Famer (HoF Jerk) Rickey Henderson.
-This was my first trip to the Ardmore Music Hall (old 23 East Cabaret). The new place is nice, cleaned up, fresh paint, curtains to dampen some of the noise. The floor features tiered seating, decent rotating beer selection
– I didn’t eat there but they had a mediteranean menu that appeared appropriate to the style of the room.
- It appears AMH is trying to get a national/NE Corridor Regional act in about once a month