Friday night, June 11th, my small apartment contained approx. six bands, four DSLRs, thirty music-lovers, ninety degrees and endless humidity battled by three fans, and one bottle of Old Crow. What does all of this add up to? Enough (well documented) acoustic/folk/indie music and good vibes to last well into the morning hours.
After splitting from the Terrace, we headed over to my place- acquiring a couple musicians along the way, t0 set up for Urban Agrarian’s first house show featuring Juniper Tar, Strand of Oaks, Myles Coyne and Jack Tell, Austin Hays, and Kenny Monroe. The music started around 11:3o in my kitchen with Kenny Monroe. Per usual, his indie love songs wooed even the sweatiest of crowds. The highlight of his set was the world debut of his new song about summer. The ending lyrics to the effect of a raspy “and it’s so fucking humid outside…” gained a hoot from the wilting yet respectful and dedicated audience.
Next up on the wooden chair stage was Austin Hays. Austin’s flair for the classical guitar picking and wistful and romanticized lyrics once again, did not disappoint. During his set, many of the people in the kitchen took a seat on the floor, amplifying the mellow vibes. Halfway through his set, the guys from Juniper Tar and Strand of Oaks arrived from playing the Terrace show and joined the crew in the kitchen- passing around the bottle of Old Crow and getting lost in Austin’s set with the rest of us.
Following was Myles Coyne, who preferred to play standing on a nearly-broken chair. His Bob Dylan-esque guitar and harmonica folk set contrasted the previous sets with faster paced rambling fingerpicking. Preemptively apologizing to all the (two) women in the house, Myles broke into his built-up anthem with the line, “I think it’s safe to say that I hate women…” Jake Tell joined Myles for a couple of songs before doing his own thing after.
The last two acts of the night blended together as each played in the other’s sets multiple times. The guys from Juniper Tar shared two chairs as the folk continued on around 1:30am. Some foot stomping caused a minor conflict with the neighbors downstairs, but luckily no law enforcement was dealt with as Jack Tell and Myles politely (ahem) took care of the situation from the balcony. The guys played a few songs and ended with everyone in the kitchen singing along. Strand of Oaks followed suit with a song consisting of a whole lot of drunken howling. One of the highlights of the show was the song shown in the video below with Strand of Oaks joined by Juniper Tar’s harmonies and an impromptu harmonica-soloing by Myles.
The night concluded around 3:30am after a surprisingly not ironic dance party broke out in the living room and me playing “Wagon Wheel” to a circle of singing shirtless guys in the kitchen. One of our main purposes of this show was to get a whole bunch of talented musicians under one roof and to meld the gap between music performers and appreciators. Watching other bands add to each other’s sets completely unmotivated by money reassured me that there still exist bands who are in it for the love.