Thursday, January 24, 2008

Blame Sally in Sacramento

Indie-pop, folk-pop, whatever you want to compare their style to won't exactly hit the mark. Piano, guitar, bass and percussion (not a drum kit) are the tools these women use to craft their sound.

I was introduced to the band Blame Sally a number of years ago by a friend who discovered them in the San Francisco Bay area. They often play in and around the Bay area and sometimes on the outskirts of Sacramento, but tonight they were right here, downtown at Marilyn's on K. What I really enjoy about this band is that their passion and joy for music comes through in their performance. As a casual musician, it's inspiring. Whether you are a fan of indie-folk-type music or not their shows are great because it is obvious the band is having a great time, the songs are heartfelt and the music's eclecticism is interesting.

The twang of a Fender Strat or slide guitar evokes some country flavor in one song, bongo drums and bass suggests African rhythms on another. Other instruments present were a mandolin and accordion.

The melodies chosen over atypical chord progressions are fresh. Dynamics and silence are no strangers here either, and enhance the individual skill of these musicians and their voices. The two and three part vocal harmonies are beautiful.

Blame Sally has been gaining attention over the past year with their 2007 release, Severland, ranking number one on XM Satellite radio's Starbucks XM Cafe and making the pre-nominating ballot for a Grammy nomination in the Best Contemporary Folk, Best New Artist and Song of the Year categories.

The venue was low-key and not crowded, but in a good way. This band connects with its audience and those who were there were enthusiastic. Here's to more tour stops in Sacramento.

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