Photo by Jillian Mapes
I remember the first time I heard the name Andrew Bird. Though I’m somewhat ashamed to admit this, it was Friday, April 13th, 2007. (Yes, the last time he played the Southern Theatre.) The sweetly meek Chicagoan happened to be one of the faces I was serving at a restaurant that afternoon. I had no idea of the talent sitting in front of me and was honestly just happy he was polite and low-maintenance.
Two years later…
With the melodies still reverberating through my head a full week after the his Wexner Center show at the Southern, it’s safe to say the sold-out show was worth it’s equivocal weight in musical gold. (And I officially feel stupid.) Between the consistently eloquent tone of his lyrics and his equally impressive skill as a one-man ensemble, Bird himself proved to be a Noble Beast. His endearing awkwardness in small-talk between songs filled the theater with a charm that was inescapable. Bird encored with St. Vincent and covered Bob Dylan’s “Oh Sister,” which was a true treat.
Opener St. Vincent (aka Annie Clark) played an electric set that primed the anticipatory mood of the evening. Clark is touring on her newest album, Actor, which is a mature progression from the last. (I’ve found it impossible to stop listening to either.) She somehow managed to juggle a perfectly rosy demeanor with some bad-ass guitar playing in a way only someone who had once been in a 23-piece band could.
Both acts continue separate tours through the end of the year.