If this is my public, I'm ready for you

My little sister, who is very busy and important, went to see Colin MacIntyre last week, here's her review.

Colin MacIntyre

The Living Room, New York
October 6 2009

The curly haired Scotsman from the Isle of Mull delighted the audience at the Living Room in New York’s Lower East Side on Tuesday night. Playing a mix of songs from his Mull Historical Society days to his new album, ‘Island’, Colin’s sensational voice and amusing commentary in between songs entertained the audience for the hour long set.

Sitting solo on the stage, facing a dozen or so small round tables, Colin played two songs from his new album, ‘Island’ early on in the set: ‘Cape Wrath” and 'The Edge of Nearly'. Both are my favorites on the record, particularly because of the powerful violins which give each song an eerie complexion. That is what I love about Colin’s music. It’s hard to pinpoint, but there is something joyful and yet slightly haunting about it. His adaption of the Yeah Yeah Yeah’s ‘Maps’ was a beautiful and touching acoustic piece. It truly tugged at the heart strings.

He played the next few songs with excitement and energy – stopping in-between to share some stories with the audience. He pulled out a music report card from his schooldays, in which the teacher wrote “Colin spends too much time showing off to ever make anything of himself” and sharing the inspiration for ‘Tree Scavengers’ – a trip to upstate New York where he felt as though turkeys were flying in the air. He was cheeky and charming, at one point mentioning, that he “really learn to play the guitar for this one” before starting one of his more difficult musical pieces.

But it was Colin’s performance of ‘Samuel Dempster RIP’ that was the most memorable part of the evening. Before he started playing, Colin explained that the song is about his great grandfather, a man who served in world War and never returned, or knew that his girlfriend was carrying his child, “the girl he’ll never know as his own”. It felt as though the entire room was moved almost to tears as he poignantly shared this tragic moment in his family’s history.

Colin closed the set on a high note with “You’re a star” – leaving the crowd head-bopping, fist pumping and grinning ear to ear. He even managed to squeeze in a Letterman gag mid-song when he sang, "TV hosts write their own epitaphs”. It was pretty amusing.

In summary, Colin is simply a brilliant musician. His beautifully written songs are moving, thoughtful and at times heartbreaking. He is tremendously talented and an absolute pleasure to watch. Thankfully, Colin mentioned that he married a New Yorker, so in his own words…he’ll be back soon.

- Anu Mathur

[download Colin MacIntyre - Samuel Dempster RIP]

He played 'Watching Xanadu'!


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