Radio Bean Birthday Party Part 2, November 2, 2013

Words by Tim Lewis.

I had a great time at Radio Bean last night (and morning and afternoon…). Work was just slow enough, that I was able to get out early. I talked Christopher Larrowinto heading down, and we arrived just before 5pm. I did not have any grasp on what band was scheduled to play when, so I just went with it, and let the schedule play out.

When we arrived a middle-eastern group were playing. They sounded nice, but I did not catch their name.

Tango Sessions followed. They were a man on accordion and a woman on violin collectively called Lotango. For the first song there were a few people who got up and danced the tango, but they just let the band play for the other two. It wasn’t exciting to me, but it’s fun to get out of your usual head-space and listen to different music now and then.

Maryse Smith followed, playing a gentle guitar and singing stirringly poignant lyrics. Unfortunately, the room was very loud, with people talking and noisy coffee drinks being made. She struggled through it like a trooper, but the audience missed out on a lot by not listening. Things quieted for her fourth song, and Baby rang true and clear. The timekeeper said she could play a fifth song, and that one was really good too. She had to struggle for the first three, hopefully she caught a few people, if they listened to the last two.

Next up was a woman with a 78 turntable, and a regular turntable, called The Spinstress. She mixed something that sounded like songs from the ’30’s with some effects. At times it had the effect of disembodied voices talking over enchanted music. It was cool for a while, but with the band setting up behind her, I was itching to rock.

The Cave Bees followed with a blisteringly loud and fast set. The glorious punk rock filled my soul with joy. They opened with Sweet Pussy, then played a new one. I think the next one was 22R, then there were two more new ones, the first of which was Juliet. I’ve only heard the new ones a few times, over long periods of time, but they sound great and hopefully they will be recorded sooner than later. The Bees were a blast, as always, and they had me dancing hard for every moment.

Ryan Miller followed, solo, with a song on electric guitar. It started with the character being born in 1935 and recording milestones over their life. For his second song, he sat at the electric piano and played a beautiful song. He switched back to the electric for his third song and had Joe Adler sit in on drums. It had an indie rock joy to it, and made me with Rebekah Whitehurst was still there and sitting in on bass. Joe left the stage and Ryan finished the set on guitar with an ultra-cool Femme Fatale.

Next up, the stage was filled with beautiful and super-talented women. Steady Betty played some very tight rock steady music. It was very easy to groove to and all four singers created a wonderful effect. They sang Butterflies, Forget About Tomorrow Love Me Today, Neighborhood, the song with the la la la la part, and then wrapped up with Ghetto.

Ryan Ober followed with his voice and acoustic guitar. The first song was very passionate indie rock pop song. It was very engaging and had me captivated from the first note. The second was equally good and he got the audience singing a tiny amount on Valerie. He’s so talented and his songs are very well crafted.

Greg Nixon And His Hobo Friend came on next. Dressed as hobos, they burst through the front doors and fell on the floor. The got up and set up a “campfire” (lights and paper that made a nice fire effect), handed out sticks to those of us in front, and placed marshmallows on them. As we “toasted” the marshmallows, they told stories of the 13 years of the Bean’s history. It was a good time, and brought into focus, what the day was all about.

Up next was a guy on acoustic guitar named Sean (Hood?). He played very gently and delicately. His two songs were very touching. I don’t know how it translated to the rest of the room, but I was close enough to catch every moment, and it was really good.

Kat Wright and Brett Hughes followed with a couple of songs. Their voices sound so nice together, and he played some solid country guitar. Windy Pines was sweet as always and God Gave Us A Heart To Forgive had the good advice that Kat promised.

She left the stage and Brett was joined by Tyler BollesMarie Claire Johnson, and the rest of the Honky Tonk Tuesday group. The set began with a killer note shared between the pedal steel and Marie’s keys that opened a path into the song. The uptempo honky tonk was fun and boisterous. Marie sang her heart out for the second song and returned to the keys for the third. There was a great interplay between keys and the pedal steel all through the set. A guy named Eugene came up and sang the fourth song and Brett took the vocals for the fifth. While not my cup of tea, they were really fun to listen to for a few songs.

Well, that’s about half of what happened yesterday afternoon and early evening. It’s time to head to work, so I will write up the rest later.

This post was originally published by Tim Lewis at his personal blog,