Opening was Alex Niedt (myspace), a local kid playing (I think) his first show. He was good, has a great voice, and good show (in spite of his"jitters," which he claimed he had, but I never saw).
Next on deck was Francois Vidot (website | myspace). I had only heard his stuff in the background, last time I was at the gallery, so I wasn't too familiar with his stuff. But when he set up on the side of the stage, to perform without any amplification on his guitar or mics for his vocals, I was intrigued. Then I was amazed by his performance. Here's a sample, in a little bit of a different setting, but you'll get the idea.
Francois Virot - Say FiestaHis vocals are definitely unique, but they fit his style so well, are so emotional (without being emo), and, even though he was in the midst of losing his voice during the performance tonight, sounded so great to me. To top it off, he's a super nice guy. I talked with him a while, about his tour and the Midwest, and about speaking French.
The third and final act of the night was Ramona Cordova (website | myspace). Another great guitarist and vocalist. His songs were touching, his voice touching, and guitar parts complemented the setting perfectly.
Ramona Cordova - Heavy on my Head
He was also struggling with his voice, I guess they camped out in Arizona a week ago, and the dry air got to their throats. It didn't hurt the performances too much, though, even when the singers couldn't quite complete the verse before a fit of coughs came on, it didn't detract from the song, and they still gave it their all.
I was sooo glad I came to this show. It turned out to be one of the more impressive shows I've seen in a long time, and a genuinely good time. If they're coming to your town (I'm looking at you, Minneapolis friends - Wednesday at a place called New Pines, check either of their myspace pages for more info), I'd really recommend going to see them, support them, chat with them, because they're great guys, great musicians, and definitely worth your while.