Poi Dog Pondering
Last night we saw my favorite local band, and words can't describe the music, the energy, the atmosphere, the camaraderie of the group there to hear and watch and sing along with Poi Dog Pondering.
They're a local Chicago band who has (or is it have--this is one grammatical rule I just can't ever figure out) been around for probably 15-20 years. We've seen them about 10 times, and each time the show is energetic, uplifting, fascinating. There are about 11 members of the band with loads of instruments -- drums, trombone, cello, violin, guitars, synthesizers. You can't describe the type of music either... it's so ecclectic and different from probably anything you've ever heard, or thought you might like. And some people don't like this music. I do.
When we were in Philly, they came to a small venue, where Abra Moore opened for them. Before the show, Frank Orrall, the lead singer, walked past me and I went up to him, mentioned we used to follow them in Chicago all the time and now we lived out in Philly and were so happy they were in our town. We shook hands, he was very gracious and kind, and of course, I am easily star-struck. Since they are not as well-known on the east as in Chicago, we were front-and-center, Frank's sweat spilling onto me as he sang his songs, which are extemely poetic, thought-provoking, inspirational and even spiritual. The words just get to me.
I ended up front-and-center last night too, and at one point, nearing the end of the show, when Frank stopped to take a swig of his Heineken, I handed him a pen, asking him to sign the playlist taped to the floor. He did, apologizing that it was messy, and gave it to me. During the show he also did that thing where a singer will go into the crowd and be surfed through the hands of the people. How trusting is that -- to allow yourself to swim along a see of strangers, to let them reach for you, to let them move your body through the flow of fans, just so they can grab some energy from you.
And, later, there was a bouquet of flowers on the stage; he took them from the vase and started handing them to people in the audience. I got one, a white lilly not yet open, and later, in the parking garage, I gave my flower to a girl who was at the concert and noted she wished she had one. Heck, I've had a personal conversation with the guy before; I got his signature; I took their bottled water from the stage to drink last night; I also got a guitar pick. She can have the flower. Okay, I'm somewhat of a groupie, I guess you could say.
You have to check them out. Let me know what you think.