Last night, David and I had one of those concert experiences that will probably stay with us for the rest of our lives. I know I've been crowing like a madwoman about the film Once, but dangit, it's for a reason. It's beautiful. Last night, we got to see The Swell Season (Marketa Irglova and Glen Hansard) perform in a very sold out show at the El Rey theatre. It was one of David's birthday presents, and I managed to keep it a surprise from him for a while until Nic Harcourt was blabbing all willy-nilly about it on KCRW.
I stole this pic from someone's website
I heard today that Glen and Marketa went outside to all the people who didn't get in and did a mini concert for them. That's just lovely.
I'm not sure how to explain what it was like watching these two play. I sort of felt like I was in the middle of something truly transcendent. The two of them have an incredible chemistry musically and emotionally that is simply like watching their characters in the film walk off the screen and onto the stage. Glen Hansard was just giddy with excitement at how nuts the crowd was over them. He said he's been trying for seventeen years to be successful and now it feels like it's finally happening and it's overwhelming. He said Marketa told him, "Don't flirt with Success and then be surprised when she offers sex."
He told a lot of great stories about the songs and his Irish sensibility was hilarious and haunting. Hearing a voice like that sing live was breathtaking. Oh, those Irish tenors! And speaking of Irish tenors, he managed to pull Damien Rice onto the stage for a song during the encore. Another gorgeous voice.
So, halfway through "Say It To Me Now," possibly most affecting song of the whole film, Glen stomped on a pedal too hard and his guitar amplification ceased. So he asked the audience if everyone could be quiet so he could just sing it without amplification. It was nuts. It was amazing. David got got some audio on his phone. I also found (ah, the Internets!) a YouTube video of that moment.
Anyway, I'm still high from it. David and I never go to concerts, and I'm making a resolution to correct that in the coming months.