may 21st: knappuccino's XXII

Happy Anniversary to us!

Tonight was the last "usual" Knappuccino's show, featuring the Anniversary special: Songs We Wish We Wrote. Our performers put stellar spins on their favorite songs, and from moment to moment we were awestruck.

We started the night off with Pat Nakajima who did a great job despite just getting over a cold. He rocks so hard; I don't know about you, but I certainly couldn't tell there was anything wrong with the guy. And I'm picky. I was sad when Pat left the stage, as he's become a Knappuccino's regular, and I know I'm going to go through some major Pat withdrawal in the upcoming months. He brought so much to our stage, and I consider myself very lucky to have been able to give him a place to play so often.

Up second was Steve Weatherman, who played us some old standards-- I wished we could have turned the lights down lower and brought in the smoke machines to create the jazz-club ambiance. Gen VanCatledge joined him for a number and encouraged us all to sing along; it was a very moving kumbaya kind of moment, but not cheesy. Steve and Gen were integral in getting Knappuccino's off the ground, and I'm sure I still owe them a dinner at Culinaria from our first night ever.

Next up was I Love You, I Love You, I Have A Headache, aka Sam Williamson. Headache is a recording-only project, layering distant vocals, sparse instrumentation, atonal loops, drones and ambient found sounds onto four-track. Armed with a four-track recorder and a guitar, Sam presented haunting renditions of great tunes, like Video Killed the Radio Star, and Gloria. He asked the audience to move their chairs way up front and to crowd him, so our knees were touching his. After every piece we were silent, not wanting to move or breathe because we wanted to hold that incredible moment. Clapping felt uncomfortable because we were moved so deeply. Frankly, I loved how uncomfortable it made me feel. We FELT. It was an astounding connection. (Next month, Sam does a 180 and opens up for The Industrial Jazz Group with his fun and quirky band, B'Gosh.)

Chris Turner was up next, and he kicked off his set with a fun rendition of Punk Rock Girl. (Did you know they're closing Zipperhead on South Street? It's the end of an era, man.) As always, the rest of his set was equally energetic, and it's always a treat to have him strum out a couple tunes.

Finishing up the night, in a lovely ma fin est mon commencement statement, was Brian Turner, the Knappuccino's muse. I couldn't let the night go without telling the Story of Knappuccino's (gather 'round the campfire, kids!) and how Brian was really the one who inspired me to turn this dream into a reality. He finished up his set, which finished up the event, with the song that started it all: Waste by Phish. A fitting ending to a great run.

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