I had the pleasure of witnessing Seattle’s David Bazan, who made his fame as the front man for Pedro and the Lion, but remains known thanks to his incredible song writing and sincerity, perform his first show in Edmonton: an acoustic set in the living room of a 3,000 square-foot log cabin.
Most attendees had heard about the show through a fan-based mailing list and the show sold out almost instantly.
Sixty or so people congregated at the house. With the weather being as lovely as it was, attendees mingled outdoors prior to the show. Once it was announced that Bazan had arrived, the crowd briskly walked indoors and found a space to sit either on the floor, on a piece of furniture or on the staircase as he addressed the crowd with his acoustic guitar and played his first song.
He asked if anyone had any questions a few times throughout his 75-minute set. After the first time he asked, everyone remained silent, until someone piped up and asked if he would like a scotch. Everyone chuckled as he accepted the offer. Throughout his set, his question period evoked topics ranging from lyric meanings to possible collaborations in the future.
Since he was not backed by a band, or amplified by electric instruments, Bazan stripped away all distractions and brought clarity and focus on his lyrics and raw strumming.
He performed his original material, played requests, including “When We Fell” and “Virginia,” as well as acoustic versions of Pedro and the Lion tracks, including “Options.”
After the show, prints made by Bazan were for sale. The backside of the print contained a download of cover tracks performed by Bazan. These were sold via the honour system (leave your cash, grab your print and change) and tracks included covers of Radiohead’s “Packt Like Sardines In A Crushd Tin Box” and Bob Dylan’s “The Man In Me.”
His show was an intimate experience that was more moving than I had originally envisioned.
Bazan indicated that he plans on returning to Alberta. After an overseas West Coast tour, he will be returning to California and beyond on the way back to Seattle.
By Jenna Lee Williams
Photo: Sean P.