Ben Kweller at Rice University

What a cool coincidence!  I heard an interview with Ben Kweller a couple of weeks ago on Public Radio, whadaya know, he comes to Houston to play for Willy’s Picnic at Rice University (for free!).  (FYI Willy is Rice’s owl mascot.)

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There was a good crowd, given that Rice is a small university and it wasn’t advertised except on campus.

Kweller and his band put on a very good show.  They truly enjoy what they are doing.

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I bought his current album — and I mean album in the old-fashioned sense (it came with a free CD and poster!  with lyrics!) — it’s songs that he has written over the years and has more of a folk/country flavor than his earlier work.  Some of his videos from earlier CD’s and performances are on youtube.  That stuff reminds me of Tom Petty, but not in a derivative way.

Several of the songs seem to almost end until they don’t, and they use a lot of syncopation.  There were a few times when the rhythm almost seems to skip like an old record player.  It keeps you just a bit off balance and makes you pay attention.

It was fun, and I enjoyed it very much.  It reminded me of the good times I had back when I hung around with local musicians.

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