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Colin Devlin in The Little Room at The Largo, 7/11/09

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9pm, Saturday – July 11, 2009

It was one of those weekends where I tell myself, “I live in LA, I need to see more shows.” It’s been a year, and I’ve yet to visit the Largo, a venue at the Coronet in West Hollywood infamous for the local likes of musicians such as Jon Brion, comedians, and intimate shows. Luckily a friend was in town, Audri. My concert buddy, fellow groupie, we’ve been singing together, going to see musicians together, and sharing our eclectic interests in music for probably ten years. Now I had no excuse, I could check out a venue I’ve yet to visit and I wouldn’t be alone, nor alone in the choice of venue and artist.

So after a long day of good Asian food, watching This American Life, coffee, and driving around, some time after 8pm we scrambled online through LAWeekly.com to find a random live show to check out. We came upon Colin Devlin at the Largo. Simple enough, small intimate room, affordable tickets, sure, we’ll go.

The atmosphere in The Little Room, it was usual for what you would expect from a small-scale venue that holds 60 (with a bar!). In the bathroom, to my left was Bruno. I look up, and B.B. King is deep in tune on a giant poster. The room was dim, the candles were lit, and a slight smell of incense traveled through the air. In the corner, a piano, some acoustic guitars, and electrics. Not knowing what kinda show we were in for, we studied the stage. Audri noticed that Colin was a fellow lefty by the looks of the guitars.

Everything that followed was what you would hope for in a mellow evening. Good jovial crowd, nice service, Colin humbly played and sang his tunes. Next thing we learned, he’s Irish (by a fairly obvious audible hint and his taste for Guinness). And turns out, this “random” artist we decided to explore that night wasn’t so random at all. Colin Devlin is of “The Devlins”, a brothers duo whose music you’ve probably heard in films and TV shows. Before performing “World Outside”, Colin made reference to the movie, “Closer”. We recognized the dark melodic tune immediately. All songs were played on guitar, except one on the piano. Something about Colin is that he appears timid. Timid in approaching the mic, and especially with the piano. Guitar being more of his forte, Colin still willingly played one song on the piano, promising he wouldn’t “fuck it up” like last time. Holding the soft pedal down throughout the song, he was being safe, but still held his voice high and clear, without a mic to sing into. As soon as the song ended, Colin almost jumped away, as if relieved that it was finally over with. He did admit that he is not much of a piano player but he still took on the challenge and did it well. Back to the guitars, his endings to the rest of the songs that night weren’t as abrupt and held more riffs and tunes. Toward the end, Colin announced the song, “Waiting”. I heard a cheer from my right, from Audri. I asked, “Do you know this song?” Audri: “Yes.” Me: “Is this a cover?” Audri: “No.” This is when she realized that Colin Devlin was of The Devlins, and she had heard “Waiting” from Six Feet Under, a show she enthusiastically talks about and that I’ve sadly yet to see.

I guess the show was more than we expected, more than just a guy with a guitar and people sitting near votive candles lit inside glass jars. Colin, more than just a singer/songwriter, has made his way into lending music for films and shows, into collaborating with name artists and producers, and probably feels most comfortable in the acoustic moody selection he’s chosen. After all, this is the Largo. And anyone that plays at the Largo isn’t just anybody.

So this is it for the first blog about a local show. They may be few, but this will perhaps encourage us (Audri and me) to see more shows, as I am already a poor excuse for not exploring LA enough. And I am just remembering that I will be missing out on a Ray LaMontagne concert at the Hollywood Bowl tonight. If any of you get to see him, he is also delightful, as Audri and I just discovered last Friday when we went to the Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien. Audri and I ended the night jamming together with my only one guitar and set of drumsticks, reminiscing jr. high and high school, playing some Bob Dylan, Radiohead, Travis, Juanes, Rocco DeLuca, and many more until 4am.

Cheers to good venues, good friends, good musicians, good crowds, and good times.


Written by jennykwoo

July 12, 2009 at 6:36 pm

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