I am often asked by music fans outside of this area if there is still much music to love from this city. So, rather than denounce the question, I demonstrate the great music that we have here. One reason that Dayton continues to have a thriving music scene is illustrated in the fact that in one weekend we have three great independent shows to attend.
One of the shows from this past weekend, featured the vinyl release of Tango Boys by The Motel Beds at The Canal Street Tavern this past Friday. The ‘Beds played a blistering set with the Buffalo Killers (Cincinnati) and Chocolate Horse (Cincinnati). It was a powerful show. The crowd was so moved by the energy of the performance that they chanted the name of one band member, Deryl. To which, the lead voice of Motel Beds replied, “well, that has never happened before!” This demonstrated the connection between band and audience. No prefabricated sets, no blinding lights, just lovers of music coming together and creating community. The ‘Beds were energized by the release of their great new record, Tango Boys and an appreciative crowd. The Motel Beds played a strong set that focused on their new record but had a few standouts from this prolific band’s earlier work. The ecstatic jumping and swaying of the band was captivating and contagious for the crowd.
And in the same night that Motel Beds were playing, you have Vanity Theft, Okay Lindon, and Good Sir Con Artist at Blind Bob’s in the Oregon District. “Bob’s” has become another important venue in providing independent bands a place to play in Dayton. If there is stronger frontwoman in a rock band than Alicia Grodecki, I might have to disagree. She reaches out to everyone in the venue. The band is fantastic! They connect with their crowd on a level that is tactile, you feel it in your bones. The crunch of Brittany Hill’s deft guitar playing resonates with you long after the song has ended. Attending a Vanity Theft show is like being invited into a secret club where the music and the feeling that it creates makes you feel unique and interconnected at the same time. The show was opened by Okay Lindon who from the beginning with energy and conviction. Okay Lindon is a band that has simply not gotten its due. The band played several songs from their Rotating Dates and Everything in Moderation CDs. The twin guitar attack of O-Lindon is more than ably backed up by a strong bass and amazing drummer. They ended their set with a muscular version of Fastball’s “The Way.” That song has rarely sounded as urgent.
If that was not enough, you then have Bonneville releasing their new CD, Amy’s House with a show at Canal Street this past Saturday. Although the set focused on the new music, the band demonstrated their versatility, tight harmonies, and deft playing. It is incredible to think that this band is as young as they are and play so damn well. Again, the crowd feels a bond with the players and in those musical moments, we connect with one another in the sincere joy of music. You can hear the new album at http://www.bonnevilleband.com/
So, the question is not whether or not music that matters is being created in Dayton. Oh no. What we have here is an embarrassment of musical riches. Dayton has a vibrant music scene indeed! And we have not even begun to talk about The Rebel Set, Guided By Voices, and Me & Mountains who are all working on new music for your listening pleasure in 2012! Or the vast list of terrific bands that you can go see on almost any given weekend. What are you waiting for?