2.08.2010

Rock on, Tiny Dancer!

I took my son to his first "all ages" show at Cake Shop on the lower east side.  He is currently obsessed with Care Bears on Fire and their song, "Everybody Else," and they were part of the line up for an all ages matinee. We've taken him to see live music many times before, yet mainly adult artists who perform for children (like the fabulous Suzi Shelton); this show was peer-to-peer action, and they ROCKED.

We arrive (after an obligatory stop at Economy Candy) and the upstairs is crowed with hipsters and ten-year olds, each curiously staring at the other. We descend into the (literally) underground club. The band members were adorable, with their peach skin complexions, ratty Converse and orthodontics. I was prepared for an afternoon of wincing and slightly embarrassed looks between the grown ups. The joke was on me--the kids brought it: amazing talent, genuine post-post-punk-power-pop with a bona fide snarl.

The first on the line up was BYS. The lead singer had a cherub's pudgy rose cheeks, Peter Frampton's hair and pipes like Satan with perfect pitch, but the star of the show was the 4'9" guitar player-he could shred! They were incredible: tight, polished and totally at ease with their bad-ass selves. They closed with their only cover: Led Zeppelin's Rock n' Roll. If they weren't so good, that would have been a cliché.

Next up, were Jack and the Jaywalkers. Now these were the big kids-high schoolers, and all of their skinny-jeaned pointy-shoe wearing friends stormed the stage for their Iggy Pop meets Elvis Costello antics-filled set. Talent wasn't their strong suit, but they didn't know that as their confidence infected the crowd. They were having so much fun and the crowd was too-bringing down the house with their songs of young love gone bad, visiting colleges, and the crowd-pleasing Weezer cover.

Now for the main event: Care Bears on Fire (or, CBOF). If I could have had 1/10th of the rock and roll these girls have in their soul. A guitar/bass/drums trio, these girls growled in their incredible sweet voices accompanied by a veritable wall of sound. I have never seen drums beaten so savagely and an angel-face so contorted with punk rock attitude. Their only cover? Richard Hell. Of course.

So, needless to say, we are on all of their mailing lists, my son now has BYS stickers and CBOF posters all over his room (although he chose to hide under my shirt when the opportunity arose to meet the band). When we got home, he sat at his drum set, counted out 1-2-3-4 with his drumsticks, and rocked out. All in all, a good New York afternoon.

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