Monday, March 15, 2010
A Glass of Pink Martini
So, there i was in my office room on a Friday morning, having a McMuffin and browsing through the Star, hoping there won't be any pictures of the First Lady, but damn....there always is a picture somehow...and i was flipping through Metro for events. I hardly do this, but its been 2 years since i last went for a concert which Switchfoot, I figured I might as well check for some stand up comedy acts. I knew Placebo was coming, but that didn't appeal to me. While browsing, I chanced upon Zee Avi....hmm...her songs are not bad....maybe can la....and then i saw it...in an obscured tiny spot....PINK MARTINI, live in Dewan Philharmonik. I checked the for the dates....15 and 16 of March! Jeepers Creepers! Thats next week!!
I picked up the phone and called Colin, my usual concert kaki, but he couldnt make it. So I called Eugene, and he said maybe. And i posted in FB...useless effort. Within less than 4 hours, RM110 ticks were gone...and me and Eugene and He Xiang got ourselves RM150 ticks.....instead. :) Still, these were good ticks.
And so there we were on Monday night, 15 March 2010 in Dewan Philharmonik.At a Pink Martini concert! It was a formal event, and many were in their dresses and lounge suits. Everyone looked like Vesper Lynd and Bond. As for me, I was pretty comfortable without a jacket but still, not only did I feel underdressed, I felt out of place cause I thought i had stumbled upon some upperclass community gathering of sorts...but hey, I'm here for good music....and that's all that should matter to me. I was prompted by an usher, asking me not to use my camera (damn....no pics or evidence of me being at a Pink Martini concert, i thought!). Oh well..you win some you lose some. When the light went out, a bloke in a suit went up on stage, and gave the band it's intro...something like this;
"Tuan-tuan dan puan-puan, mempersembahkan, dari Oregon, USA, Martini Merah Jambu!!!!"...hahaha...what a way to start....and when the music played....really....nothing else mattered at that time. We were experiencing our first sip of Pink Martini...
They started off with Bolero, an instrumental, which gradually introduced each member of the band/orchestra. After a grandiose introduction, Thomas Lauderdale, the pianist/ band leader thanked us for coming...in English and Bahasa Malaysia!! He carried himself very well, and we had a laugh as well. And then he introduced China Forbes, the female lead and voice behind Pink Martini. She told us that she had no idea how we have ever heard about Pink Martini, but nevertheless thanked us, to the laughter of the crowd. She started singing Let's Never Stop Falling In Love, in English and in Bahasa Malaysia!! hehaha...we clapped and laughed through the song.....it was excellent really.
And the band played on. Then they played one of the signature songs, Sympathique, which is probably an ode in French to people who refuse to work ...haha...and explained the meaning of the chorus. It was greeted with huge applause. The band then played some new songs from their latest album, Splendor in the Grass, with 2 concept pieces entitled ....hmm nevermind...i don't really remember the titles at this point.
The band had a 20 minute interval, and that's when me, Eugene and He Xiang went down to check out the Cd's on sale, for we were told that there will be a meet the band session! I wanted to get the latest album, but it was sold out and what was left was Sympathique and Hang on Little Tomato....so....i pondered for a while and....decided to check after the concert, if they had anymore stock of the latest album instead.
The band played on....again after the interval and further introduced new songs including the album titled song Splendor in the Grass, claiming it to be influenced from music by the Carpenters......and they were not kidding! It sounded like something out of my old AIWA hi fi cassette player when my dad played the Carpenters in it! Nostalgia habis!!
Before they closed, they stated that they were gonna play two songs. After playing the first song before the finale..and i knew that they were gonna end the night playing Brasil. That would have been a finale to remember! Instead....to my disappointment, they played Dovedanya Mo Bombino....it was ok larrr...but not what expected and wanted to hear....sei..:( but when they finished, the crowd (including myself)...gave a standing ovation. They truly deserved it! So they went backstage......and then they came out!! The crowd cheered and whistled!! I was correct. My hunches never fail me. I knew they would end with Brasil! Great! it was a rousing finale and it got the crowd to their feet and samba-ing albeit from their seats.... It was great fun to see the crowd and the band enjoying themselves. We were only an inch close before actually forming a mosh pit! haha kidding...and they ended with a Bang!
4 thumbs up for showmanship! They are one band which really enjoyed themselves while playing on stage. Its like, they were entertained by themselves playing music with each other! Well...there were 11 of them in all. Just imagine Slipknot, only with evening jackets,loungesuits and without the Boiler suits and masks. No cussing, swearing and shredding of guitars but delightful, easy listening and oft-quirky music. :)
Suffice to say, after the concert, I went down, got myself a copy of Sympathique (since they had no more stock for Splendor in the Grass) and qued with my concert kakis to meet the band and get my memorabilia stuff signed. In conclusion, I had a great night out and Pink Martini gives you goose bumps and a happy feeling and leaves you wanting more :)
Below are pictures during the meet the Band sessions, Lauderdale is the guy with the silver hair and the lady is China Forbes....the rest are members of the band. Pics far below, Eugene and He Xiang...and last picture below - yours truly...haha
Good night and selamat bekerja besok.