I didn’t expect funny and engaging. She performed Sunday at Annie DiFranco’s Asbury Hall at Babeville. It’s a great venue. You can see more about it in my blog post: The Five Best Things About Living in Buffalo.
It wass and intimate setting, probably not much more than 200 people there. I managed to sit in the second row and spent a lot of time watching her bow hand because mine usually resembles Jim Carey’s Claw from Liar Liar.
Zoe Keating is billed as an Avant Cellist. She performs mostly original music working with her cello, a laptop and a foot pedal. As she plays her cello, her laptop records it and plays it back as she plays the next segment. This continues until you get the effect of an orchestra of cellos.
She is one of my favorite artists and I found her on twitter of all places. Last year when I started playing cello, I looked for cello related tweeps, et voila, there she was. Sunday was the time I’ve seen her perform live. She is impossiblely slim and tall, while I am about the size and shape of a cello. She has wonderful bright red dreads, which are frequently stacked on the top of her head.
She is Canadian, and currently resides on the west coast, but what I didn’t know is that she spent the last two years of high school here in Western New York, spending much time at the Eastman School in Rochester. Paraphrasing a remark she made Sunday, “We hear a lot about Music in Schools, but it wouldn’t matter if there weren’t parents to drive you everywhere.”
Her parents were at the performance and Keating wondered aloud if the entire audience was made up of her parents’ friends.
I found it amusing that she spoke to the audience as though they were all fellow musicians. She cracked a joke about being asked to compose in F# which I wouldn’t have gotten a month or two ago.
She also called out for orchestra jokes from the audience and got this:
What is the difference between a string bass player and a pizza?
A pizza can feed a family of four.
Ha! Poor musician humor.
Another odd thing was following her tweets from backstage while I was sitting in the audience waiting for the show to start.
She is working on a new CD – yay! I already have everything she has recorded and I’m looking forward to more. I can’t wait until she is back in town.