Sunday, May 5, 2013

What Peter's Show is Going to Be Like (A P/Review)

Here's a review from someone who saw his first show on the "In This Generation" Tour.  Just for comparison.

I predict his show will be lovely and delightful, even if you are not a Monkees fan.  Sometimes he takes a while to warm up, but things will be different with a script and a video show.  He hits his stride when everyone forgets to try to match this bearded face up with that familiar sunny smile from childhood.  I've heard audiences open up and change the way they listen.  Judgmental and overly eager at first, and then everyone settles into the music.

I hope that this show goes into his folk music history, as well as the years after the Monkees.  I wonder if the songs will match up with personal stories, or if they will be presented chronologically.  Sometimes a song hits you early, you hear in it something that it may take years to actually recognize.  I would love for this show to surprise.

I predict there will be some jokes which will be funny and some which won't.  And look for those moments that seem to fail, because he has a charm about his performances (originating in the "lovable dummy" character from the Folk Scene days of the early 1960's).  It masquerades as indignation, or awkwardness, but you very quickly get a sense of him instinctively flipping things around.  (See the above review mentioning "You don't know what clapping is, do you?")  THAT is what to watch for.

Oh, and the songs.  If this is the first time you've seen him perform, you get to hear "Clarksville" and "Higher and Higher" done in a renewed way.  He takes them out of the familiar realm and shows you why they are good beyond the frozen memory of the recording.  Listen to them carefully. His voice traveles down a series of roads, some with beautiful views, rocky highways clinging to the side of a mountain, some dirt roads.  His voice has matured like his face, there is the innocent young man, layered over with years of experience.

Once upon a time, before recordings, people used to gather with friends and family and sing. If you were very lucky, there was a talented leader in the group who would move from instrument to instrument effortlessly.  Listening to the show, I'd recommend that you close your eyes and imagine a simpler time.  A time that is not frozen on a screen or a record, music that flows like a river in the present moment.

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