September 3, 2007

Doug Fir Lounge (830 E. Burnside), Gretchen Mitchell, Stephanie Schneiderman and Liv Warfield

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I saw the best show last night. The best one I have seen in a long time. Gretchen Mitchell. Stephanie Schneiderman. Liv Warfield. At the Doug Fir Lounge. One of the best places to hear music in Portland.

We got there 15 minutes before the show started and the floor was nearly empty, but the tables and chairs were all full. We took our seats on the steps by the bar. It was comfortable and we stayed pretty near there the whole night, which was just fine - we could see everything. There are no bad spots at the Doug Fir.

Gretchen Mitchell came on first and blew me away with her smoky disco voice and her rendition of "Let's Stay Together". She sang "I Can't Make You Love Me" and I was mad jealous of the ordinary-looking 40ish couple dancing with such intensity I could feel it.

Stephanie Schneiderman was entertaining - I can almost sing along to her songs, which makes me feel like I know her songs and her. Even though I don't. Know her, I mean. I especially love her song about Professor Sunshine. I am a sucker for murder ballads. I met Todd, the guitar player from Stephanie's band, who is quite nice and a kickin' accordion player. The accordion is so much more than the Lawrence Welk that I grew up with and I loved the sound it added to the set.

When Liv Warfield came out, I got the biggest smile on my face. She was so confident, so beautiful and so happy, that I just couldn't help it. I also started dancing - almost involuntarily - the music was so powerful and the energy of the band was infectious. The banter, both with the crowd and with her band, was funny. One song in particular is still stuck in my head - "Why Do You Lie" - and it was the most fun song, since the audience got to participate quite liberally throughout.

I went home with throbbing feet and a caffeine headache (anyone have a substitute for diet coke? I have GOT to kick that addiction), but with a smile on my face. I had fun. Yaaaaahooooooo.


Oldie said...

Murder ballads are ever go to the annual "Night of the Murder Ballad"?

Lizzy said...

Yes! I went last year and loved it. I think it was the last year that they were going to do it. I was hoping that they would change their minds because it was so much fun.