Sometimes you get lucky at a festival -- Part One
One of the bands I had on my must see at Lincoln Calling list was The Spring Standards, who were scheduled to play at 11 p.m. Thursday at the Zoo Bar. Well, there was a schedule change and the Brooklyn band went on at 9 p.m.
By chance, I walked up to the Zoo about 10 minutes they finished the soundcheck. I had nothing circled for the 9 o’clock hour, so the plan was: meet at the Zoo, then roam around. That didn’t happen.
Instead, I watched an impressive set by The Spring Standards, a four-piece, band that plays harmony-filled folk pop, with players switching from guitar to drums, keyboard to guitar and swapping lead vocals.
“We’re from Brooklyn, New York and we found ourselves in the middle of this awesome festival,” vocalist/keyboardist Heather Robb said.. “Lincoln Calling, great name. Cool idea.”
Thoroughly professional, which is a high compliment, The Spring Standards were superb from start to finish, delivering good songs, sounding fine and selling it all with into-it performance.
Sometimes you get lucky at a festival -- Part Two
Because The Spring Standards played the 9 p.m. show, I had nothing set for the 11 o’clock hour. So I wandered into Duffy’s Tavern knowing nothing about Christopher the Conqueror. I left an hour later with an vinyl album in my hand.
Christopher the Conquered is Chris Ford from Des Moines who played electric piano and sang. A bizarro-world Randy Newman, Ford is hilarious and sincere, veering close to parody but saving it with heart.
He can really write, play and sing a song, going piano bar sad with a tale of artist abandonment “The Greatest Song Ever in the History of Pop Music” then cranking out Ray Charles-like gospel.
Can’t take your eyes off him engaging playing and delivering stream of consciousness talk between songs, Ford got the small audience to snap its fingers, jumped off the stage singing, dropped to his knees in the middle of the floor, scatting away.
Very unexpected, very cool and my 2012 Lincoln Calling “fell in love with a band” choice.