Why live musicians matter
On Thursday night,
said they’d be making an announcement on Friday as to who their new piano player would be. Tracy
Troy Peach played on Thursday evening and did an admirable job. For those of you who don’t know,
has been driving the bus and helping Jared run the sound. In fact, it looked like an impromptu moment midway through the service when he was sort of put on the spot and really came through. Libbi sang The Potter Knows The Clay and was talking after the song and just kind of out of nowhere started into the second verse of that song again with no music. Troy quickly came in and played the song out (just piano and vocals), even taking it up at the end. There were looks around by the others on stage, making it seem as if it was something totally unrehearsed. They had me believing it wasn’t planned. Kudos Troy . Troy
Katy Peach came up and sang a song they did on the Torch video (filmed two years ago at NQC). It was a Who Am I medley that she originally sang with Habedank and Waldroup, but on Thursday, she sang with Habedank and Troy Peach. She ripped it. She’s too good to not be singing with somebody.
Good night for the Peach family on Thursday.
Perrys were solid as always, nothing out of the ordinary, just solid.
Two points. One: as a student of live performance and the craft of showmanship, I’m particularly fascinated by this anecdote not just because it’s one of those departures from the nightly routine that can really break open a chamber of feeling and religious experience for an audience that makes gospel music unique, but also because of the “meta” aspect of it all.
The moment was special and unexpected and interesting because it used the official absence of a live musician to outflank the audience and achieve a series of special “live” moments. With Holt gone, the audience wasn’t expecting live piano (who does these days in sg?), and the Perrys smartly capitalized on gospel audiences’ lowered expectations. After all, what the Peaches added to the Perrys set was, in the end, nothing more or less than what a good musician and a great singer do. But we don’t get so much of that these days in sg, and the Perrys, realizing that ok music is the new normal, appear to have played off the poverty of genuinely live gospel music. The Perrys: Not Mediocre. Smart. Very smart. Really.
Which leads me to my second, more general, point: call me cynical, but I always assume everything is intentional until proven spontaneous (which is not always the correct assumption, mind you, and more on that, actually, in a post to come soon), but in this case, whether impromptu or rehearsed, this little interlude reinforces how essential live accompaniment is to the gospel experience. And more Katy Peach, please.Email this Post