About a month has passed since I fled the warm shores of California to document Gaby Moreno and company on an east coast tour. Pursuing their dreams of becoming well paid and well loved musicians, the road hasn’t been easy, but I can tell you they are on their way. It’s in the air. I can feel it!
And grasshopper, who better to help you than one of the most successful DIY musicians out there? Ani Difranco. Why? Because she tears it up. Her band tears it up. And since they were so generous helping me help others, I thought I would put together a little homage as an indebted soul and new convert.
What do I mean when I say a DIY musician? Of course she plays her own instruments and belts out lyrics with her voice. When I say DIY, I am speaking more in terms of producing and distributing her own music. Retaining control of her rights to everything while simultaneously having total control from start to finish. She’s an artist centered producer as well, and I can only hope that she signs Gaby. (Sending telekinetic messages…)
If only it were like that for everyone. But it ain’t! The industry is riddled with pot holes and shady characters alike. Just watch E Hollywood True Stories, and it’s not hard to see there are some soulless heart-sucking bastards lurking in the shadows.
But back to the good people in the industry! In addition to Ms. Difranco, two other finely talented musicians encompass the current trio. The very soulful and thoughtful Mr. Todd Sickafoose. Damn I love that name. Well, of course the first name is golden. But Sickafoose. That’s just gravy. I digress… The New Yorker lists Todd as, “Ani Difranco’s secret weapon,” and The San Francisco Chronicle goes on to say that Todd is, “A captivating improviser, imaginative composer, and master of collaboration.”
I can attest. He walks baselines with ease and weaves diversity in every song.
Next up is the rhythm itself, Mr. Andrew Borger. He’s kind of the quiet ninja. Super friendly and flaunting a perfect grin on many occasions, he expertly dissects and fuses together a cornucopia of sounds.
His clangs, screeches, crescendos, pots and pans, and twangs and bangs elevate one’s listening experience from witness to participant. More than once I found my hand smacking an imaginary symbol splash. The woman in the next row was not pleased.
Short and sweet, but there you have it. Great people helping out great people. I’m just saying… It’s so refreshing to have an established artist help an aspiring one reach success. Thanks for helping my friends realize their dreams!
And it’s working: Good news for Gaby- they were just invited back for a longer tour starting in late January! I see dreams being fulfilled.
My only regret? I didn’t get the T-Shirt that read, “Ani Fucking Difranco.”
See you down the road.