If you are a music lover, an art connoisseur, or just looking for a good party, then you would have had a blast at this epic event “Americana” which took place in downtown Long Beach on Friday 4/25 and Saturday 4/26. Americana was a two-part show that brings together some Long Beach musical All-Stars with jams and spoken-word theatrics, commencing in a beautifully decorated lot and outdoor venue, and ending inside an industrial space art-gallery designed by a talented curator.
Americana took place at the Madhaus, 624 Pacific Avenue, Long Beach. Saturday, 4/26, was the last night to catch this rare, special event that brings local artists and musicians together in a collaborative, experimental fashion, and holds true to an artistic, Americana themed night of energetic live-music and live painting.
The Americana theme gave justice to songs like California by Joni Mitchell, California by Rufus Wainwright, America by Prince, and contemporary songs like Lua by Bright Eyes. Watching this event is really like getting a fresh taste of some excelling local, Long Beach musicians and artists and a good feel of how powerful, connected ensemble groups can wonderfully perform together music they love.
Joshua Fischel http://www.reverbnation.com/joshuafischel spearheads the creative effort as artistic director, assisted by Jonelle Holden, Sachiko Janek; and a number of other creative talents came together to orchestrate this event.
The Ensemble is a collection of talented musicians that have their own bands and projects, but they often collaborate, and this collaboration brings a powerful, theatric sound, connecting to the roots of the Americana theme.
Neil Young’s Harvest Moon was eloquently played, softly providing a pleasant mood and foreground to the abstract artwork of this industrial space in downtown Long Beach. The amount of talent amongst the singers and musicians was really impressive, and this crew really loves to explore the theatrics of performance art as well.
This family of musicians work on various projects individually and are in music groups of their own, some in various different projects together through the years, some from the children’s super music group Jelly of the Month club http://jellyofthemonthclubband.com that sells out the House of Blues in Hollywood. The musicality and comical melodies of Jelly of the Month Club and their last well-produced album energizes all music lovers of every age.
The very talented Mr. Crumb http://www.reverbnation.com/mrcrumb was present in his usual-self, performing various instruments in random locations throughout the night, displaying his own playful musical romance of him just hanging out and doing what he does best, swooning instruments.
Joshua Fischel is a passionate, powerful singer and musician, leading several wonderful performances in the show with his commanding yet gentle singing voice.
I was excited to see some of my favorite, local female-singers, Cassandra Ward and Elizabeth Messick, both contributing their own amazing singing performances that were quite lovely as their voices are so unique and delightful.
Seasoned Los Angeles local, Justin Iannelli, was kicking it on bass and bringing his usual positive vibes – Justin plays bass with a several acts including Jelly of the Month Club, Kat http://www.reverbnation.com/itskatsmusic, Mister Crumb, and Punami http://www.punami.com.
Art was also on the menu for the evening as the entire space was set up as a gallery showing. The art curator also worked as an artist during the after party. She circled three canvases with two other female artists/painters, providing live-art and painting, experimenting with collaborative painting on three separate wood-canvases.
These paintings were a hit in the after party, as their paintings quickly came to life over drinks.
Their artistic talent was just as colorful and quick to excite as the music. I could not believe how fast these artist created their artworks that night. Levi Gadson whipped up his live painting before I could blink my eyes.
And there were other featured talents with exhibits and constructed wall, art pieces – such as Erin M. Stone http://www.erin-stone.com
The doors opened at 6 pm and the drinks started flowing, the performance started at 8 pm sharp which was nonstop with rocking energy, and then to top it off there was an art gallery/after party till 1 am. What a killer party!