NQC 06: Afternoon Showcase

The only afternoon showcase I managed to catch was an hour with several B-list artists who didn’t make the mainstage cut (though I did glimpse a very overtanned Dino and his very overtanned Wife with Anthony Burger’s widow and step-daughter playing the commemorative Steinway in the Exhibit Lobby and leading a singalong with about a 100 people). Some quick thoughts on a few of the artists I heard:

Paid In Full: some tight and exciting ensemble work hobbled by overamped tracks (a problem that just got worse as the hour wore on), a sloppy house mix on the vocals, and even sloppier endings – the tenor, whose voice is really textured with some nice colorized tones absent in most sg tenor singers, ended both the songs the group sang way before the rest of the ensemble. I’d like to see more of the group live, get a sense of their stage presence and if their material can sustain a live audience on a large scale (“What the Storm Doesn’t Know” sells well live, and the group’s lead (Littlejohn, I think) had some really nice lower tones). From what I know of them so far (which is very little really) it’s hard to tell what’s up with them. They have the look and the appeal on stage and their latest project is well sung, but it also suffers from mediocre material and arrangements.

The Ruppes: Their latest alto is nowhere near Kim Ruppe Lord’s caliber, but the Ruppes blew everyone else out of the room. “I’m Gonna Make It” contained so many spectacular little moments – passing tones and vocal fills and other subtle ornaments and grace notes – it was thrilling to hear, as per usual when the Ruppes are around. Though honestly, I couldn’t count all the different shades of red and blonde in Brenda Ruppes hair.

LeFevre Quartet: a big disappointment, and not just because the lead singer made some really dumb crack directed at “any Muslims who might be in the room” (a feat of impercipience and blockheadedness which of course emcee Andrew Ishee seemed to feel compelled to try to top when introducing the Jody Brown Indian Family, saying that we need not “fear these Indians. They’re nice Indians and they won’t come after your scalp or anything” … yes, he actually said that). The sound was pitchy at all levels, and the material was insubstantial.

Crystal River: a young quartet that opened with a kind of hiphopified “Higher Ground,” which was courageous and inventive. Their short set was also pitchy and they seemed to be oversinging, but I suspect some of their issues might line out if they had more room to stretch and settle in to a groove.

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Trackbacks & Pings

  1. Beyond the Headlines » Andrew Ishee and Scalping Indians on 20 Sep 2006 at 12:29 am

    […] In one of his NQC posts, Doug Harrison at the averyfineline blog attempted to pin Andrew Ishee with a politically incorrect tag for a comment he made while introducing the Jody Brown Indian Family in a Friday Afternoon showcase. Apparently Ishee said “we need not ‘fear these Indians. They’re nice Indians and they won’t come after your scalp or anything.’” […]

  2. Lefevre Quartet signs with Canaan « Coomer Cove on 12 Feb 2008 at 7:04 pm

    […] I’m happy to see the Lefevre Quartet get some exposure outside of strange comments at a NQC showcase.  On the other hand, the revival of Canaan Records hasn’t exactly set the genre on fire.  […]


  1. Debbie wrote:

    Dino’s wife was once married to gospel great Jack Tony.

  2. FormerDJ wrote:

    Thank you for reminding people that the artist now known as “Lori” is Anthony Burger’s step-daughter. It seems much of the inudstry has forgotten that Lori’s father is also in the industry. I’m sure it hurts him every time his daughter is referred to as another man’s child.

  3. Mikey wrote:

    Maybe that was the fall of Gerald and Kathy Crabb. Being referred to as the parents of other people’s children.

  4. Daniel J. Mount wrote:

    What is Lori’s last name? She goes by her first name so often that I do not believe I’ve heard her last name yet.

  5. FormerDJ wrote:

    Her last name is Apple.

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