Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Concert Review: Little Jackie

Little Jackie: October 25, 2008 @ Bowery Ballroom, New York, NY

I went down to the Bowery Ballroom to catch Little Jackie perform. That's right folks, another trip to the lower regions of New York City's East side. They were doing an early show as part of the CMJ Music Marathon. The Bowery Ballroom is actually a really good place to see a show. The venue is one of those not too big, not too small places. The sound system there is excellent. My ears weren't blown to bits and everything came through crisp and clear. Their drinks are a bit weak and service was okay. Near as I can tell, every spot was a good spot as far as viewing the stage goes.

Opening the show, was rap act Lord T and Eloise from Memphis, TN. Not being a fan of rap music my first thought when I saw them on the bill was, "who?" I've since learned they do a style they've dubbed "aristocrunk." Alrighty then! For those like me, new to this group, they consist of Lord Treadwell (Lord T) who dons 18th Century clothing complete with "powdered" wig and Maurice Eloise who was painted gold and sported giant hair rollers with his running suit. They were joined by MysterE & DJ Witnesse who both looked, well, normal. Now, I didn't set out to know their names but that's the great thing about rap, they tell you who they are in their songs. At any rate, they weren't my cup of tea but the people who had arrived early enough to see them seemed to be enjoying the performance. The group interacted well with the audience and put on a show like they were playing to a packed house.

Little Jackie took the stage and kicked things off with "Crying For The Queen." Now, this being my favorite song from their album, The Stoop, it got me revved up for the rest of the set. Brooklyn's Imani Coppola was in good spirits working the stage with a bit of sass and a wild mass of curly hair bouncing around. She complained about a cramp in her foot a few times throughout the show though. Perhaps it was the footwear ... white knee-high Doc Marten boots with yellow laces ... yeah, I felt she should have left those alone. But, we're not here to talk about fashion, are we?

"LOL" followed the quirky and highly enjoyable "Black Barbie." The song, "LOL," with it's line 'you just sent the wrong text to the wrong bitch' had more than a few singing along to that line like they identified all too well. This was followed by the title track from their album The Stoop. The song is a laid back, breezy and infectious number that you can't help but sing along to.

For their cover of "Remember (Walking In The Sand), the song originally recorded by The Shangri-Las, Imani played the violin for a bit. She added a touch of drama to her version of the girl group sound. At times, I felt she was a little too dramatic for the song. "Go Hard Or Go Home" followed. Imani pulled out her acoustic guitar for this one. Here her vocal talents really shined. This song had me wishing she had done a few more acoustic numbers.

"The World Should Revolve Around Me" and the nights encore, "The Kitchen" proved to be standout crowd pleasing numbers. While the crowd was full of energy and enjoyed the entire set, the latter song especially had everyone dancing. Coppola herself hammed it up a bit while encouraging the audience to sing along when she tossed in the chat 'ma ma se, ma ma sa, ma ma coo sa' from Michael Jackson's "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'."

All in all, for an early show, on a rainy night in New York City, you really couldn't ask for more.

Set List:
  • Cryin' For The Queen
  • Black Barbie
  • LOL
  • The Stoop
  • 28 Butts
  • Guys Like When Girls Kiss
  • 31 Flavors
  • Remember (Walking In The Sand)
  • Go Hard Or Go Home
  • The World Should Revolve Around Me
  • The Kitchen
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