19 July 2006

Pete Yorn Loves His Band

Or so he said in song last night.

Cindee and I caught the lovely Pete Yorn and his acoustic show last night at Smith’s Olde Bar. It’s not a stretch to say that a good time was had by all. He had a great time on stage, even though it was his fourth show in 48 hours. Mr. Yorn has quite the darling personality, and charmed us with his onstage banter. (Gizmorox, he said he’ll be back in the fall, so keep that couch reserved.)

Yes, he’s pretty … but he can also sing

Pete kicked off the evening with his solo acoustic Divorce set, with “Life on a Chain,” Elvis’ “Suspicious Minds,” and The Smith’s “Unlovable.” He proceeded to play all of my favorite Yorn tunes, except for “Murray” — but I forgave him since we were so close to his adorable face.

Pete Yorn, in fine performance form

But there were two standouts for me last night:

Highlight #1: Pete’s cover of Warren Zevon’s “Splendid Isolation.” It was glorious hearing that song live again; it’s been 10 years since I last heard Warren perform it. I blew out my voice singing along with Pete. “Splendid Isolation” followed his cover of The Smiths’ “There Is a Light That Never Goes Out” — two songs, he noted, that don’t really go together. And yet they did.

Highlight #2: Pete started the encore with “A Girl Like You,” which may be my Yorn fave. But, then, I do love "Life on the Chain" and "Strange Condition" ... his cover of "I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend" ... "Just Another" and "Closet" ...

Pete sings “A Girl Like You”

Pete also sang several new songs; based on what I heard, the new album (Nightcrawler, out August 29) should be good. Each show's setlist is on PeteYorn.com, so click here for last night's lineup.

Why the f*ck do people pay good money for a concert ticket just to chat and party and ignore the performance right in front of them? We were surrounded by a pack of thirtysomething post-frat boys reliving their glory days at the house, flirting and yelling and laughing and talking about the good ol’ days — everything but listening to and enjoying the show. During a solo acoustic set. At the front of the crowd. That room stretched far behind us, with plenty of room for socializing. Can’t they fraternize back there? F*cking rude weasels. I nearly kicked them in the shins, but Pete brought me from the negativity to the positivity (you had to be there).

You may think you’re unfamiliar with Pete Yorn, but chances are you’re not. He’s a regular on the soundtrack circuit, including:

  • Shrek 2: Cover of The Buzzcock’s “Ever Fallen in Love”
  • Me, Myself, and Irene and Forty Days and Forty Nights: “Strange Condition”
  • Spiderman: “Undercover”
  • Stuck on You: “It Never Rains in California”
  • Just Like Heaven: “Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)”
  • Hellboy: “Red Right Hand”

Pete has also participated on some good tribute albums, covering the Ramone’s “I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend” (We're A Happy Family: A Tribute to the Ramones) and Warren Zevon’s “Splendid Isolation” (Enjoy Every Sandwich: The Songs of Warren Zevon).

Pretty boy. Great songs. Yep, I like that Pete Yorn. I might catch his show when he returns this fall.

* * * * * *



At 7/19/2006 05:40:00 PM, Blogger haahnster said...

If there's one thing that's worse than non-stop socializing at a concert, it's non-stop socializing at an acoustic set. And in the front of a small venue...

You should've followed your intuition and kicked 'em in the shins!

At 7/19/2006 05:49:00 PM, Blogger Dale said...

Glad you managed to love the show except for the knobs up front Beth. Pete seems like a good guy. I've heard some of his tunes and they're all good.

At 7/19/2006 06:28:00 PM, Blogger Beth said...

HAAHNSTER: I should have gotten medieval on their Docker'ed asses.

DALE: Add Pete to the list. He's pretty good.

At 7/19/2006 07:36:00 PM, Blogger Jeremy said...

And there's a perfect example of just one of the many problems with "Frat Boys". Of course that doesn't mean eery fraternity man. "Frat Boys" are a particularly obnoxious breed that refuse to ever grow up and stop acting like a**holes.

At 7/19/2006 08:39:00 PM, Anonymous Glassmeow said...

I should have jumped on tix for him sooner. His show here (Doug Fir Lounge on the 29th) is sold out!

But...he's playing a set at Music Millenium earlier that day. Better than nothing!

At 7/19/2006 08:43:00 PM, Blogger Old Lady said...

You know, if you don't know my brother you should! Do you ever go to Wax N Facts at Little Five Points? Anyway, that's the nice thing about where you live, all the artistic venues!

At 7/19/2006 08:50:00 PM, Blogger Beth said...

JEREMY: I couldn't have said it more eloquently.

GLASSMEOW: Pete did two free shows in Atlanta; pretty long sets at both. Check his site for the setlists.

OLD LADY: Send your brother to my blog. I love Wax N Facts, and have blown many a paycheck there throughout the for decades. Maybe I've bumped into your brother while flipping through vinyl.

At 7/19/2006 08:53:00 PM, Anonymous glassmeow said...

Cool! I will!

Got tix today for Mr. Come Gutsy Catch (hopefully with Brute Peck in tow) on the 4th opening for John Wesley Harding. Trying to decide if I want to drive to Eugene and back in the middle of the week for Minus 5 opening for Los Lobos (get another chance on the 11th here in Portland). The Woodland Park Zoo show (Seattle) sold out.

At 7/19/2006 09:52:00 PM, Blogger barista brat said...

so glad you had fun! looks like it was an intimate setting as well.

At 7/20/2006 12:13:00 AM, Anonymous dayle said...

Oh I just cannot wait until I see him August 2nd. And I will chant "Murray Murray Murray" until he plays it. That is the song that made me fall in love with Petey - as I like to call him. So glad you had such a fab time!

At 7/20/2006 06:24:00 AM, Blogger Beth said...

GLASSMEOW: Scott McCaughey is soloing it these days? Or is it a Minus 5 show?

BRAT: It was fun. But hot.

DAYLE: I'll look for a show review on your blog. And let me know if he sings "Murray" for you.

At 7/20/2006 07:45:00 AM, Blogger gizmorox said...

You can bet I'll be there in the fall. That was a very nice roundup, complete with pictures! You're my hero. :)

I really love that he's putting up setlists. Not enough people do that.

The frat boys had it half right, because really, where's a better place to pick up chicks than at a concert of a sweet, sentimental balladeer? But to alienate them by being morons and talking through the whole thing kind of defeats the purpose.

At 7/20/2006 03:12:00 PM, Blogger Keith Kennedy said...

Hey, I'm an old frat boy and I love introspective accoustic concerts. Does that make me an oxymoran or just a plain one?

At 7/20/2006 03:15:00 PM, Blogger Beth said...

GIZMOROX: I thought about that show being a great place to pick up chicks ... but those dorks pushed the thought out of my head. There were a lot of cute solo guys there.

KEITH: I'm sure you have the sense and respect to enjoy the show. Not all frat boys are bad boys. But you are a special breed, sir.

At 7/20/2006 04:03:00 PM, Anonymous Glassmeow said...

Scott opens for a lot of shows. The first time I saw Robyn, a few years back, Scott opened for him. Just Scott and acoustic guitar.

Last month, only Scott was billed as opening for Tim Easton at the Mississippi, but Peter was there too. Completely unbilled, unannounced. Was a great surprise!

Time before that, it was Scott and John Ramberg opening (and playing with) Wreckless Eric. Also at the Mississippi - but they were both on the poster for that one.

Kind of a nice arrangement for us locals to get The Minus 5 both in full and in components!

At 7/20/2006 09:00:00 PM, Blogger Beth said...

You Portlandites are some lucky folks. We used to get that back in the day, before R.E.M. spread out.

At 7/21/2006 11:07:00 PM, Blogger Gypsy said...

Look out for that autofocus.


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