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.)
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.
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.