So far 2011 has been good to me, local music-wise. Good groups of people pulling together to do interesting and amazing things, forcing bands onto my radar that I would not have otherwise seen. Three of my first five shows have been locals, and I’m glad for it. I resolved it, anyway, to see more new to me local bands, and last night was great for that.
The Triangle does benefits for good causes, and then it does going away parties — last night for consummate Triangle keyboard player Charles Cleaver, who’s relocating to Brooklyn for the sake of love. (That’s a pretty good sake.) I wouldn’t say that all these bands, bands Charles had played with or does play with, were my speed, but it was basically a low-key, cheerful sort of evening, wonky set changes and occasional derailing in the middle of unfamiliar songs and all. Ash and I stayed for all but the back half of Wylie Hunter’s set, and for Tripp, who I have still never seen despite adoring Alex Wilkins. (Someday, Alex. Sorry.)
And Charles played with all ten, his particular brand of cheerful, impertinent piano lines, standing up from his keyboards when he got too excited, singing lead on “Allison” with This Year’s Models (my favorite Triangle cover band hands down — “Tonight we’re Elvis Costello and the Imposters!”). Despite it being his night, he was wedged into the darkest corner of the 506 stage, which was kind of hilarious and led to me not actually getting many great shots of him. It was just one of those happy laidback nights at the 506, celebrating someone who the music scene here will definitely miss (I for one will miss Charles’ spectacular pink blazer in particular). Some of my newest favorite locals played; I drank a few beers; I hung out with Ash and got to shoot the shit with a bunch of casual friends. I even ran into the guitarist from Terry Anderson & the Olympic Ass-Kickin’ Team and got to tell him how much I’d enjoyed their Saturday night set; the scene here is small, and open, and so, so wonderful.
I don’t know that Charles and I have ever been introduced, as it were, but I’ve always, always enjoyed watching him play, no matter who he was playing with. Godspeed, sir, and good luck.
A few more shots behind the jump.