Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The Felice Brothers

This past Sunday, my friend Chris used a family connection to score a spot for himself +1 on the guest list of the Felice Brothers show in Dublin.  The venue was a club called Whelans that has no real philosophy in terms of booking bands as far as I can tell, seeing that the last time we went there we danced to an electro-pop DJ.  I had never heard of the band before Chris started insisting that these dudes were the next Dylan, and had been for months.  From my observation, it seems that the person or persons Chris deems as the "Next Dylan" seem to fluctuate rather frequently.  Therefore it seemed it meant something that he had been holding this conviction for a couple of months.

I started by listening just to their recently released album "Yonder is the Clock", and to be honest, I wasn't bowled over in excitement.  It was great music to be sure, but it didn't hit me in the aural sweet spot.

Their gig at Whelans this past Sunday is ranked in my top three favorite concerts I've ever been to in my life.  The community that the Felice Brothers managed to create in that venue within two hours was awesome.  The main singer (although most "brothers" had one song that they sang) Ian Felice is almost painfully serious about the lyrics he sings - this is a band meant to be seen live.

Maybe it was the spirit of Dublin that was permeating the air and making everyone giddy, but I for one couldn't keep the smile off my face.  I even stood in five-inch-heels for the whole concert and followed when Farley Felice (the washboard and fiddle player) pulled some people up on the stage.  This is from someone who pooped out half-way through Lollapalooza last year, and went home with a friend to take a nap and watch television.

There is something extremely adorable about the group that the Felice Brothers have created.  Although only two of them are actually brothers (there used to be three, but the drummer brother moved on to other projects), each band member has adopted the stage name of his own last name plus the surname Felice.  I just can't get over how adorable it was to watch a group of brothers getting silly and playing music together with such fierce energy and love.

In conclusion, I wish I could play the Harmonica.


P.S. Check out Farley Felice on the far left.  The night we saw them at Whelans he was wearing a New York Yankees fitted, a bandana and a white tee.  His favorite artist is Jay-Z, and he is the Felice Brothers resident rapper and hype man.  But most of the time he plays the fiddle and washboard.  Uh. Swoon much?

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