Tour Diary – Syracuse, NY (April 20, 2010)

The Westcott

(Jason Lent has forsaken the island paradise of Hawaii to follow us around for a few months. I have happily placed the tour diary in his capable hands. It should bring a new perspective to our ramblings.)

First impressions being what they are, I walked into tonight’s venue somewhere in Syracuse, NY and my flip flops stuck to the floor. The stench of warm beer, puke, and really warm beer permeated every surface. Too shoddy to continue as a movie theater, someone had the grand idea to remove the seats, drop a PA system on the floor, and start booking bands. To their credit, the venue staff worked hard to mop and straighten up during sound check.

Tonight’s crowd was fairly small but the beer specials made them sound like a Roman army in Margo’s monitor. Lost in the repugnant smell of the club and the noise of the bar was some fantastic moments of music that were not missed by those paying attention. “Shining Moon” came on strong early and “Stranger Here” reduced my notes to comic book adjectives. Pop. Bam. Pow!

The acoustic set made it clear that the quiet material was destined to drown in the drone of the bar. At that point, Nigel Tufnel slipped into the sound booth and turned everything up to eleven. A three-song run of “Don’t Let It Bring You Down,” “Dark Hole Again,” and “Murder Tonight In the Trailer Park” to close the set was triumphant over the steady chatter.  When “Lost My Driving Wheel” began to close the night, the din of the crowd had subsided and everybody took notice of the music on stage. Finally.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, April 21st, 2010 at 10:17 am and is filed under Tour Diary. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

4 Responses to “Tour Diary – Syracuse, NY (April 20, 2010)”

  1. John Says:

    April 21st, 2010 at 10:34 am

    I was at the show; it was amazing. Despite the Westcott’s shabbiness, they didn’t skimp on the sound system, and Margo’s voice was just as hauntingly beautiful as it is in the studio, even when they cranked it up to drown out the drunken ya-hoos in the back of the room. I’ve never started a fight in a club, but was on the verge of it last night. The acoustics in that room don’t help, but I couldn’t believe how loud the jerks in the back were being.

    I have missed three opportunities to hear this band live, and every time a small part of me has died. I got it all back last night. Good for the soul. Thanks, guys.

  2. Rene Says:

    April 21st, 2010 at 12:33 pm

    I agree that the crowd really detracted from the experience. The band was in typical great form but many people were more interested in socializing than listening. Their loss. I’m glad the band realized that there were people in the audience who appreciated them. Thank you.

  3. Brew Says:

    April 21st, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    My first CJ show after being a fan since I first heard “Sweet Jane” on CFNY when I lived in Buffalo. Life is funny like that, 20+ years on, I return to my hometown and see the Cowboy Junkies in a sticky-floored ex-movie palace.

    The people behind me incessantly chatting were beyond annoying, but… the music…

    CJ summon forth the quiet essences, an easy guitar line here, a subdued kick drum there, and then the voice of an ethereal siren lifts above, enchanting, until you are captivated and possessed with a building, steadily swaying intensity reaching through your ears like fingers, gripping your soul. You do not fight it, but surrender to the aural bliss.


  4. Emily Says:

    April 23rd, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    Well I sat in the front row. I enjoyed the show so very much. I was ready to knock that creepy man into next year. There was one person inbetween him and I. I went to hear the band play their awesome music and to listen to Margo’s beautiful voice. Instead my brain ( which was getting a night out away from children) I get to listen to this fool shouting like he is at a VanHalen concert.

    CBJ I love you. I am sorry that some of Syracuse is so rude and inconsiderate. Maybe people will now realize why we don’t get good music here often…

    I look forward to seeing you guys again. You did not let me or my husband down, you were awesome and we didn’t talk but sat enthralled by the entire show.
    Hope there is peace for the rest of your tour…LOVED the teapot…