Friday, October 08, 2010

Jasmine in My Mind

While I'm a huge music person with all sorts of eclectic tastes, I can't actually play a note. I'm lucky to run in very musical circles, though, and somehow many of my friends are musicians. Last night I went to a performance by one of my boyfriend's bands, The Soft Rock Renegades of New York City. A seven-piece band that covers the latest songs of thirty-five years ago, the Renegades played an awesome set at Fontana's in New York City's Chinatown.

The Soft Rock Renegades play songs from sing-along 1970s and 1980s radio like Seals & Crofts' "Summer Breeze," Bread's "Everything I Own," or Billy Joel's "Just the Way You Are." Last night's best numbers were showstoppers: "I Can't Go for That" from Hall and Oates, and "Africa" by Toto. Two songs just added to their repertoire for this concert, Olivia Newton-John's "Magic" and Andy Gibb's "I Just Want to Be Your Everything," were terrific. While many of the seven members do double-duty on multiple instruments, the band consists of two keyboard players (including Jesse), two guitarists, a bass player, a drummer, and a percussionist. Most everybody sings backup vocals, and while two of the musicians handle most of the lead vocals, everybody but the drummer gets a lead star turn.

Their sound is really infectiously fun, turning all these familiar chestnuts into party-time celebrations that transcend mere nostalgia or kitsch. I look forward to seeing them perform again!

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