Sunday, April 29, 2007

Ma & Pa Kettle In Brooklyn

The Knitters;Chatham County Line
@ Luna Lounge
Brooklyn, NY - April 28, 2007

I'm not sure how it is going to be at the Gramercy during the week, but the Knitters in Brooklyn on a Saturday night should have been packed. Especially since the revamped Luna Lounge is now at a lot bigger (and well-constructed) diggs in Hipsterville East (Williamsburg). And if this was an X show, that it would be guaranteed to be sold out, packed to the rafters (if there were rafters). The marked drop-off in numbers from X to the Knitters really surprises me but hey that's more room for a hoe down.
For whatever reason, I did not truly appreciate the talent of Dave Alvin the last time I saw them. This time was completely different. Alvin, no surprise, is magnificent. The solo on "The New World" may be a highlight of my concert going life. The X songs done Knitter-style, as a whole, sound better than the non-X songs except of course for "Rock Island Line". What a beautifully intimate way to see one of the great unknown national treasures.
Openers Chatham County Line are pure - and I mean pure - bluegrass from North Carolina. You'd have no idea you were at a show headlined by members of one of the big mosh pit acts if you walked on these nice young men opening the night up. The bottom line is, you like bluegrass or you don't. If you do - and I certainly do - then this band gets the job done by far. Besides, it's not too often you get bluegrass in New York.

My only question of the night, were all the southern-accented women yuppies in attendance with their American Express tab at the bar, and some of whom were inexplicably dressed for a velvet-rope, guest-list club...are they there because they actually know about Knitters and Chatham? And if so, do they know X? These dames seemed a long way off from anything remotely related to X. But there they were, getting drunk and two-steppin'. Only in Brooklyn.

Here are the Knitters on Letterman in 2005 (the label is wrong).

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