It does not feel like it was that long ago that Sufjan Stevens walked off the stage at Memorial Hall, ending the 2007 MusicNOW festival here in Cincinnati, but here we are, a year later, all geared up for the 2008 edition.
In the first two years of MusicNOW, curator Bryce Dessner has brought us acts from all over the world, alot of them unknown to indie rock fans like myself, but excellent artists, and the acts we are more familiar with, who have been equally impressive, have performed original and many times new pieces set aside especially for the festival. I have always felt like musicians were most comfortable on stage at an event like this, rather than playing to the run of the mill indie crowd.
So tonight is your chance to take in the opening night of the festival. As great as the remaining nights promise to be, with the likes of Andrew Bird, Bang On A Can, and Grizzly Bear taking the stage, tonight could be the best. Yesterday, during his curators chat on WOXY.com, Bryce mentioned that if you were going to pick one night to attend, you should choose the opening night. It will be an evening of music and film, a MusicNOW first, featuring the vintage experimental films from the New Your Filmmaker’s Cooperative by Robert Breer, Marie Menken and Harry Smith.
The music will accompany the film of course, with performances from Richard Reed Parry (Arcade Fire, Bell Orcheste), Bryce & Aaron Dessner, Padma Newsome, and a special guest, who Bryce mentioned just so happens to be the 2007 closer, Sufjan Stevens. “Soof” will mostly enjoy the music, but plans to play during the last song of the night as well.
And the great thing with a night like this is, it’s pretty fluid and casual, anything can happen. I hope to see you tonight at Memorial Hall….