A few days before the show, I found out that Krista and Shane were playing a small venue in town. Usually I make it a point to see an artist just once in my life, but last time was different; I was expecting Lederhosen Lucil, but was treated to an entirely different and unfamiliar sound. This time, it was my chance to see Krista and Shane perform after becoming familiar with the songs. Turns out the venue was in un petit salon des arts. This place boasted a mixture of different artforms; music, metal sculptures, photographs, paintings, and graphic poems.
I didn’t really feel like going out that night, but I forced myself to go, reminding myself that I could say the same thing any other night and I’d never get anywhere.
When I arrived, the Salon was to capacity. I couldn’t even get in the entrance; there were people physically blocking the door. My chance to get in came after a few had made room by leaving, then I saw a path up the stairs and took it.
Enter six degrees of separation.
With the metal sculptures and graphic art poems upstairs was Nisha, who was the photographer for Pat and Jen’s wedding. We spoke for a bit before she introduced me to some of her friends.
It turns out that Nisha’s husband, Jérôme, was the photographer being showcased1. They’re both friends of Frédéric and Misun through a teaching position, the painter and his wife. The Salon is also their house; furniture was moved to make room for the artwork.
I had missed the cellist and Shane’s performance (for shame!, I had my heart set on hearing a live performance of It’s A Drag), but I caught James Cohen as he was beginning his set. James is an electrifying flamenco guitarist, who plays with speed and control. Before leaving, I bought his latest album, which is quite rare for me at live shows2. He somewhat reminded me of Jesse Cook, and I wanted to mention this to him (quite a compliment, in my book), but bit my tongue in case such a statement may have offend him3. In the end, I asked him who his influences were, and he gave me a bunch of unfamiliar names. Jérôme is one of James’s guitar students.
Misun introduced Krista as an old elementary school classmate. Krista’s performance (with Shane backing her up) was delightful. She began with some old songs not on any of her albums, and switched it up on the fly “cause it feels right”.
The thing I found most interesting was that Krista would never look anyone in the eye. I do the same thing for performances and presentations, but that’s because I’m rather self-conscious. I suppose that even natural performers have the same sense of nervousness. It’s easy to get lost in the stare of an audience member, and before you know it, you forget what you’re doing.
The twist is that I recognized Corie, Krista’s sister, from the last show. I had asked Julie to translate some Lederhosen lyrics, and we soon realized that Corie went to school with her. Julie was always wondering why Corie’s Myspace message would say, “Good show!”. Yet another strange connection.
Before I left, Jerome introduced me to Frédéric — who exudes an artist vibrancy — and we had a chance to talk for a bit before he had to see to his “guests”. It turns out that I had recognized Frédéric and Misun in some of my pictures at the last show. Along with them, Krista and Shane, I was the only one left in the house, of which over 300 people had come and gone, so I left because I started to feel like an imposing house guest (literally).
I stayed for about four hours, standing the entire time, but I couldn’t sit at the bus stop. There was too much energy in me that night. I had experienced something different. A new beginning. The opening of a door.
I kept reminding myself how I didn’t feel like leaving the house that night.
And how much I would have regretted it if I didn’t go.
Other shows with Krista Muir and Shane Watt
- Pat had already met Jérôme and seen these pictures, as he and Jen met with them when choosing wedding photographers. [↩]
- I usually go to a show to see a specific person perform, which means that I already have all their music. On the rare occasion, such as this night, a different artist will catch me. [↩]
- I get pissed when someone happens to hear me playing Lederhosen Lucil, and they say it reminds them of Lily Allen. [↩]