Tuesday, August 17, 2010
A Luminous LA Night With Christopher Dallman
When a few of us were deciding to hang out in LA before heading to San Diego for Comic Con, I asked Christopher if he would be doing a live performance around that weekend... could he, would he?? pretty please?? :)
Somehow, Christopher managed to book for a show at the Hotel Cafe in LA on 19th July. When he announced it, we were sooooo excited!!
It has been almost a month since but I still remember that special night quite well!
On that Monday, @eserei27, @HardlyanAngel, @_mriel and me had a full fun day. We went to visit the WB studio and then spent time at two beaches (Venice/ Santa Monica) before rushing back to meet @nhousey at our hotel.
With a super-quick get-ready routine, @HardlyanAngel picked @_mriel and me up half an hour later at our hotel - with just about 15 min to spare for Christopher's gig. @eserei27 and @nhousey left the hotel some minutes later in a separate car.
We arrived at the venue in good time and there was another band still playing. Somehow in the dark, we spotted our other friends who have also arrived - @tallchlck and @afreshPOV and said hello them. As we were standing there waiting for the band to end their performance, @_mriel called my name. I spun around and she beckoned to Christopher who had just emerged from the venue's "office" and was standing behind her!
Christopher had a big friendly smile on his face and we gave each other a BIG hug - both of us saying that it was great to finally see each other in person! He was in a hurry, however... as it was his time to do a quick sound-check. So, he made some quick long strides towards the stage.
It was also around this time we briefly met @DestinyRaven and her family. We managed to get a table at the corner, at the front of the stage, and not long after @eserei27 and @nhousey arrived.
I really can't remember the set list from that night because I was so enthralled. But I did remember that Christopher sang songs from his "Race The Light" album, and his recent EPs including "Ghosts", "Mistake", "Anthem", "Over My Head" and "Subterranean" and more...
I do still remember that the songs that I've heard over and over again on my iPod felt and sounded more intimate and yet vibrant, live. The song "Ghosts" especially, just sounded so much more ethereal and personal to me in real time.
On stage with him right from the start was George Stanford, who played the electric baritone guitar. George who seemed really focused on stage, provided an accompaniment that added a rich layer to Christopher's mostly acoustic-style tunes. BTW, for those who are unaware, George will be producing Christopher's next EP (album?) release.
My special memorable moments were:
- just before singing "Mistake", Christopher self-deprecatingly mentioned that his fans from all over the world were here (woohooo! yayy, us!) and we were not actually here specifically for him but we liked him and that's why we were here (true fax dat!). hahaha
- Christopher giving hubby @JPohja a shout-out and then said it's somewhat like people who like to wish happy birthday to friends on Facebook but who do not have a Facebook account.
- Sarah Roberts was also a guest on stage for a few songs including "Ghosts". Her delicate and clear vocals harmonizing with Christopher's was a delight to hear.
- the sudden realization how powerful and authentic "Anthem" sounds live
Christopher was charming and funny on stage. His banter in-between songs encouraged much laughter from the crowd.
I thought Christopher's voice was in wonderful form that night - smooth and soulful and strong in equal measure. The accompaniment by George and Christopher's skillful guitar work intermingled in warm tones like summery audio yarn.... if music could be visualized as lushly luminous, that was what his would look like.
After his performance (which ended all too soon!), Christopher thanked the crowd and then went to the booth outside to sell his CDs and sign autographs. @_mriel managed to grab two of his CDs while we chatted with each other and Lance Mazmanian, who also happened to be attending the show.
There were many CJD fans, friends and surprisingly, the crowd was buzzing considering that it was a Monday night. We went outside for awhile and hung out for a bit. I briefly met @EliOK, her sister and friend but I admit I was kinda out of it then as the cold air was irritating my month-long nose/ throat infection and my hyper-excited brain was rather cross-wired by then! Sorry @EliOK! I would have been more chirpy in more usual circumstances!
And that's where we took our impromptu CJD-candids... under the Hollywood sky... hehehe ... ;)
Lance recommended a cafe across the street for dinner and when we just about finished our dinner, Christopher dropped by with his good friend - the lovely @uhllove. We chatted again for a bit -- topics that included Comic Con, Twitter and minions -- but, because it was getting rather late, we finally said our goodbyes with lots of big hugs!
Part of this special night was captured in a sneak recording by @bdbdb and Christopher has released the special "Live in LA" EP - available digitally only on Bandcamp!
Buy it now, so that you can be part of the CJD live experience!
You can also catch some of the video recordings of that night's performance on Christopher's YouTube page RIGHT HERE!