Saturday, December 15, 2007

Phat Man Dee in NYC

Last night, we checked out some live music quite different from that offered up by Cake Thursday at Terminal 5. The location was the small "living room" concert space of the Gershwin Hotel on 27th Street in NYC. The performer was Phat Man Dee, the sultry songstress from Pittsburgh's South Side.

Like so many young performers who came out of the '90s, Phat Man Dee is hard to categorize. Nate Guidry of the Post-Gazette wrote earlier this year of her new album, "Torch of Blue": "It combines elements of jazz with Middle Eastern hooked rhythms, electronic music and mandolin guitar, poetry and improvisation."

If I remember correctly, there was a time when a Phat Man Dee show may have included glass swallowing, fire eating and other assorted activities. But, none of that happened at the Gershwin. It was all about the music. Joined by Pittsburgh guitarists Colter Harper and Tony DePaolis, PMD was in excellent form. She has a full head of hair again, too -- the shaved head and pig tails look is a thing of the past.

For sentimental reasons, my favorite tune of the night has to be the Kennywood-inspired "Ride the Roter." I also enjoyed PMD's take on "Dona Nobis Pacem."

For this week's YouTube musical clip for a peaceful weekend, below is a compilation of some PMD pieces done by the woman herself:

An aside: Colter Harper is going out next week on a new tour with that other band from the 'burgh: Rusted Root.

Pittsburgh-related aside #2: Kennywood has been sold.

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