Tag Archives: Max Garcia Conover

Ghostland Music Festival

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Thomas Point Beach, Brunswick, Maine

The school year has been SUPER busy! This lovely day was weeks ago now! Sorry for the delay!

My friend Grace texted in the morning to ask if I had any interest in going to the first ever Ghostland Music Festival at Thomas Point Beach in Brunswick. It had been on my radar, so I took her text as a sign I should commit. I hurried by Gardiner’s annual Barks in the Park to pet some pups, take some pictures, and chat with my mayor about our most recent concert experiences before heading to Brunswick for the afternoon.

I fell in love with Otis at Gardiner's Barks in the Park!

I fell in love with Otis at Gardiner’s Barks in the Park!

Pretty Penny

Pretty Penny

It was a bit of a gloomy day—overcast and chilly—so turnout for the festival might have a little less than hoped for. I set up folding chairs and blankets close to the stage just outside of the fenced off beer area when I arrived and scoped out the grounds a bit. I was impressed with how well things were organized; especially given it was a first-time festival. Festival sponsor 98.9 WCLZ’s Ethan Minton took the stage to welcome us and tell us about the important work we were supporting by buying a ticket to the festival. He told us that 1 in 4 kids in Maine is food insecure, but Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program feeds over a thousand families each year and provides food to kids on the weekends through their Backpack Program.

98.9 WCLZ's Ethan Minton

98.9 WCLZ’s Ethan Minton

I’d hurried to get to the festival early because I really wanted to see Matt Lorenz who plays as The Suitcase Junket and was scheduled to kick off the festival. He is one talented guy, who I first saw play with his band Rusty Belle and the ever-talented Caitlin Canty. Matt was nowhere to be seen, however, and Ethan told us that he sadly couldn’t make it because of car trouble. When I saw Jacob Augustine come to the stage with his beautiful guitar in hand, I knew we were in for an unexpected treat. Jacob was the second artist I ever wrote about on whatbreesees. I was going through a breakup at the time, and his incredibly heavy, soulful songs were no help at all! But he is beautiful to see in person. Jacob’s playing with one of my favorite bands, the harmonic Darlingside, this Saturday night at Empire in Portland, and you should REALLY go! Jacob’s voice will surprise you because it doesn’t match how he appears at all. He’s tattooed and has an amazing beard, but his voice is a beautiful falsetto full of vibrato. He had us join him in a whistled rendition of Happy Birthday for his friend and closed with “Waco.”

Jacob Augustine

Jacob Augustine

Grace and I grabbed lunch from the food trucks after Jacob’s set. My teriyaki jalapeno pineapple grilled chicken sandwich from the Good Shepherd Food Bank’s food truck was insanely good. Grace picked up some poutine from the other truck and we headed back to our seats in time for Maine’s most talented female vocalist, Anna Lombard. I first saw Anna at Slates in Hallowell and she blew me away. This woman can sing. She headlined Gardiner’s annual Swine and Stein Oktoberfest two years ago and impressed everyone there, too. (Swine and Stein is coming up next Saturday, October 11!). I saw my friend Vivian (who I met before a David Wax Museum show at Empire in Portland) sitting near the stage and grabbed her to come join us and share in the poutine and good music. A very pregnant Anna and her band of well-known Maine musicians like Tony McNaboe and Nate Soule took the stage and serenaded us with most of the tracks from Anna’s 2013 album, Head Full of Bells, including “They Want Us Dead,” “Nothing of Us Left,” “Waiting for Rescue,” “Why Did You Leave Me,” and “Confessions.” Anna sounded good as ever. Dave Gutter joined Anna and the band for “All For You” to end their set.

A great girls' day with Grace!

A great girls’ day with Grace!

Good Shepherd Food Bank's INCREDIBLE food truck!

Good Shepherd Food Bank’s INCREDIBLE food truck!

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Fun and games at Ghostland

Fun and games at Ghostland

Anna Lombard

Anna Lombard

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Dave Gutter’s set was up next. You probably know Dave and his recognizably raspy voice best from Rustic Overtones, which provided the soundtrack to my early college years. “Gangster” sounded great, and Dave said he’d “one up” Anna by inviting an already born child on stage to sing “I Like It Low” with him. Young Connie sounded great and was adorable. “Letter To The President” is a heavy song worth a listen, and Dave kept that mood rolling by ending his set with a song about addiction called “High On Everything.”

Dave Gutter

Dave Gutter

"I Like It Low" featuring Connie

“I Like It Low” featuring Connie on vocals

Boston based Will Dailey and his band took the stage and rocked with their electric guitars. I particularly liked “So Do I” and “Don’t Take Your Eyes Off of Me.” Anna Lombard seemed to be a big Will Dailey fan and she joined him for a song, too.

Will Dailey

Will Dailey

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Will Dailey featuring Anna Lombard

Will Dailey featuring Anna Lombard

An overcast day for a festival

An overcast day for a festival

I’d just seen Samuel James the night before at our dear friend Max Garcia Conover’s national RV tour kickoff show at Mayo Street Arts, and he was up next. The first time I saw Samuel James at Frontier in Brunswick, I felt like I was in his living room. The guy’s got soul. His blues guitar is impressive. I was glad to hear “It Ain’t Right” and “Nineteen,” which he wrote for his dad.

Samuel James

Samuel James

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Ethan invited everyone to move to inside because rain was imminent. Grace and I had been snuggled under our blankets for hours and were kind of spent, so we decided to head home after Samuel James. We missed Dominic and the Lucid, Spencer Albee, and The Ghost of Paul Revere (who I think are the bees knees). The Ghost of Paul Revere did a great job organizing Ghostland and I’m looking forward to seeing them in my sweet little town at Johnson Hall on November 8. I hope you raised a lot of well deserved and much needed funds for Mid Coast Hunger Prevention! Great job, guys!

xo,

bree

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Max Garcia Conover with Ben Cosgrove

Friday, September 12, 2014

Mayo Street Arts, Portland, Maine

Max Garcia Conover is a name that’s popped up on whatbreesees more than most. Max is a helluva guy—humble, talented, soft-spoken, introspective. If you haven’t seen Max live, it feels a lot like being serenaded in your own living room—intimate and warm. There’s not much more I can say about Max that I haven’t in countless posts about him and his live show, and this night was similarly wonderful but also somewhat bittersweet. Max, Sophie, and their dog Arlo are off in their RV on a three-month family tour of the US to promote their new album, ellery, and this was their sendoff. The gang was all assembled for a final hoorah before saying goodbye for a while to a couple of our favorite people.

The gang's all here!

The gang’s all here!

I got to Mayo Street Arts early after a great Friday afternoon happy hour with dear colleagues in Freeport just in time to snuggle Arlo and keep Sophie company in the RV while she got ready for the show. She introduced me to the now famous Ben Cosgrove, who not only arranged and produced ellery, but also played too many instruments on it to count. Max has been singing the praises of Ben for a long while now, so it was great to meet him and also to hear him play in person.

Mayo Street Arts filled in just as the show started, and the kind folks who work there had to fetch more and more seating from the back room to seat everyone, including a bunch of Max’s students from Breakwater School. Max opened the show by thanking us all for coming out and introducing Ben Cosgrove, who sat in for the entire show and wowed the crowd with his instrumental prowess. They opened with “Teem,” and Max told us that Ben really made that song happen—a difficult, instrumental piece that opens Max’s 2013 album, Burrow. Ben liked “Teem” and so learned it just by listening to it on his drive to Maine and then played it from memory at a show he and Max played together in Portland. Take a listen. You’ll start to understand how truly gifted Ben is.

Ben Cosgrove and Max Garcia Conover

Ben Cosgrove and Max Garcia Conover

Max is from Ellery, New York, and he told us that the album is about the idea of home and trying to belong somewhere. He called his new wife (!) Sophie Nelson onstage to sing “Amapolas, Part One” together. Max said this song (which means ‘poppies’ in Spanish) is meant to continue on in future albums. Sophie’s airy vocals are a nice juxtaposition to Max’s grittier sound. Ben accompanied them not only on piano but also on the flugelhorn at the same time.

Sophie Nelson joins Ben and Max

Sophie Nelson joins Ben and Max

Ben played a couple of songs solo. He said that his instrumental music is inspired by landscape and played two impressive piano pieces—“Montreal Song” and “Abilene.” I just drove cross country last month, and so I appreciated Ben’s introductory words about how disorienting it is to drive through Kansas. Max joined Ben onstage and read lyrics for one more of Ben’s songs—“The Contoured Shape of the Ground”—which I think Ben said he’d never played live before. They played “The Songs” from ellery before the break, which is a song about writing songs. I particularly like the driving tempo in the song and the lyric “they don’t want truth/just tell better lies.”

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Max called us back together after intermission and played “I Won’t Mess You Up”—a song he said is about getting married. He told us that growing up in Ellery he didn’t really know what a singer songwriter was, except he read about a guy who toured New York in a canoe with his ukulele. And then he pointed to Chris, the very sweet guy I’d been sitting with, and welcomed him to the stage! Chris Bell didn’t have his ukulele with him, but played a couple of bold, looping songs with his electric cello and a serious array of foot pedals instead.

Chris Bell

Chris Bell

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Max told a story about driving home to upstate New York with Sophie and Arlo when their car died with an hour to go in the middle of the night. Sophie fell asleep in the tow truck and soon, so did the driver. Max, feeling a need to protect his new wife, had to break out of his shell to engage the driver in conversation to keep him awake. He didn’t know where to start, so he just asked him about the gigantic crack down the middle of the windshield. It worked. Max invited Sammie Francis-Taylor to the stage to play shaker on “Say That You Know Me,” which is partially about having to connect with people even when you don’t know how or even really want to.

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I was really excited when Max started to introduce “Wildfires Outside Laramie, WY.” It’s one of those songs that cuts right to the heart of the matter and is one of my favorites of all of Max’s songs. He said it’s about when you can’t find common ground. He also told us that he just booked a gig in Laramie, and I’ll be interested to hear how playing that song there goes. It’s a heavy one.

Max, Sophie, and Ben left the stage and said goodnight, but we weren’t ready for the night to end. They came back and played another favorite, the very lovely “You’re the Farthest I Go” and went right into “Evelyn O.” to end their encore. I loved watching Sophie and Max looking at each other with sideways glances and knowing smiles during the songs they sang together. It is really sweet, how those two are together. It was a real treat to be there for this sendoff show. We didn’t get in our traditional Mayo Street sing along! I’ve gotten used to belting out the chorus on “The Start of Fables,” but Max wanted to be sure he built in some time for us all to hang out after the show since they’re off on tour for so long. Miss you guys already. Thanks for a great night!

xo,

bree

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Max Garcia Conover

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Blue, Portland, Maine

*Max’s ellery release show is tomorrow night at Mayo Street Arts at 7:30pm. We are all so excited for this moment for Max. The album is beautiful. He, Sophie, and their dog Arlo are about to embark on a many month long national tour in their little RV, so this is your last chance to see Max locally for some time. See y’all tomorrow!? Regular whatbreesees contributor Ken Templeton saw Max last week at Blue. I decided I couldn’t muster the strength to stay up that late so far from home on a school night! Thanks for sharing, Ken!*

I moved to Massachusetts in July. It’s been wonderful–the people here have been incredibly welcoming and outgoing in a way that has surprised me (I grew up in New Jersey–‘nuff said). Musically, it’s been incredible. I got to see Sturgill Simpson the other night and have my eye on Shovels & Rope and Charlie Parr in the next couple of weeks. One thing I am bummed about though is missing some of my friend Max Garcia Conover’s gigs as he embarks on his national tour in support of his truly stunning album ellery. But I happened to be in Portland last week and caught his show with Matt Wheeler at Blue.

Max trades songs with other songwriters at Blue once a month. This is fun because you almost always get a very different sensibility from each songwriter, and this night was no different. Matt’s songs are mostly narrative in nature, with strong nods to literature and history. One song, “Lexington” describes a young man longing both to join the revolution against Britain and to see his love; another song “River (A Dark Chase)” is based on a chapter in Les Miserables. I walked in as Matt was covering Josh Ritter’s tune Idaho,” and there are many similarities between Matt’s songwriting and Ritter’s approach. You can imagine these lyrics (from Matt’s song “Gold”) on a Josh Ritter album: “Sometimes bitter roots / Give rise to sweeter fruits / And all your sticks and stones, they turn to gold.” Matt and Josh use similarly playful rhyme schemes and opposition of emotions. Matt’s guitar playing is rhythmic and crisp, both while strumming and finger-picking, and he engages the audience nicely by asking for sing-alongs with songs like Indigo.” He ended the show with a beautiful version of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.”

Max Garcia Conover back in July at One Longfellow Square in Portland

Max Garcia Conover back in July at One Longfellow Square in Portland

Max’s songs during the set were mostly from ellery. The crowd at Blue was so attentive–they were really there to listen to music. Everyone was leaning forward when Max sat down at a table with his wife Sophie Nelson to sing Wildfires Outside Laramie, WY.” He said he wrote the song as a reflection on the times like Ferguson, where Max’s friend DeRay has been recently, holding a sign “My blackness is not a weapon.” Max described DeRay as one of the nicest people he’s ever met, and it is so difficult that the nicest person he’s ever met has to hold that sign. The performance was perfect–understated, emotional (but not sentimental), and it felt like we were at a house concert for a few minutes.

Keep Us All is the first track on ellery, but Max wasn’t sure it would even make the record. His genius producer, Ben Cosgrove, convinced him to lead off the album with it, and it’s grown so much on Max that he has added a transfixing, fingerpicked introduction to the live performance of the song. Max played one of his older songs, from his first EP, “As Much A Rising Sun As A Setting One,” and that was beautiful (here is an almost-as-good-if-you-can’t-be-there-in-person version). The Songs is another favorite from ellery, with it’s perfect juxtaposition of truth and artifice:  “time busted engines barked and choked / forgotten for useless as wedding coats / the towers of men the starving ford / he don’t want truth he wants something more / subcontracted gardeners for cul de sacs / slow moving parades of white cadillacs / the national mascot, the savior sighs / they don’t want truth just tell better lies.” The Start of Fables,” was great too, as the audience sang loudly along with the chorus:  “Honey we been tryin’ / honey we been tryin’ / honey we tryin’ like a barnswallow tries / piling sticks so high.”

Max hits the road on September 12. Check out his tour dates here and pick up ellery so you can sing along.

Check out Max on his upcoming national tour!

Check out Max on his upcoming national tour!

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Max Garcia Conover

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

One Longfellow Square, Portland, Maine

This was one of those perfect summer days. I had a glorious day at camp on Highland Lake with my dear friend Eric who I only see a couple of times a year because he’s the principal of a charter elementary school in Newark, New Jersey and doesn’t make it home to Maine nearly enough. He’s one of those great friends that you can pick right up where you left off with, which is a true gift. He packed up to head off to the airport and I made my way over to LFK to meet friends for drinks and dinner before Max’s show. I was thrilled to run into former student and truly talented singer-songwriter Genevieve Beaudoin as she walked by with Kate on their way to see Ryan Adams (who I heard was fantastic). Our crew eventually made our way over to One Longfellow Square to see our dear friend Max Garcia Conover as part of OLS’s Live and Local series.

A perfect day at Highland Lake!

A perfect day at Highland Lake!

We’d already taken baby Mira to her first concert (Josh Ritter at L.L. Bean), but this was her first time seeing Uncle Max live (she’d heard him in utero). That sweet baby has already seen two concerts in her first eight weeks on earth! Check out the sweet picture of her and Ellie. Mira was engrossed during Max’s set. Excellent taste, Mira!

Ellie and Mira

Ellie and Mira

Max Garcia Conover

Max Garcia Conover

Max is increasingly more comfortable interacting with the crowd when he’s on stage. He told us that he’s been busking a lot this summer and he wears a hat pulled down over his brow and plays long instrumental pieces while people mostly walk right by. Recently, he felt someone stop to listen, so he changed up the song to make the piece more interesting. When he finished the song, he looked up and the person he thought he was playing for was actually a post. He thanked us for being an actual human audience.

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Max is heading out in September with his wife Sophie and their dog Arlo in their tiny RV on a cross-country tour to support his upcoming album, Ellery. He told us that the songs he played for us that night was an effort to sort of put them to bed in anticipation of the new album. He played “The Wedding Line” (one of my favorites from Burrow) for his sister Kiah. I’d never heard Max play “Teem” (the opening song on Burrow) live. It’s a lovely instrumental piece that requires special tuning and is quite complicated to play. Max introduced the song by saying that his fabulous producer for Ellery, Ben Cosgrove, is so insanely talented that when he came to play a song-swapping show with Max, he played “Teem” from memory (after just listening to it on the car ride up from Boston)—and Max said Ben played it way better, too. Max is humble, which is something to love about him, but he plays a mean guitar. His fingerpicking is genuinely impressive.

Max unplugged

Max unplugged

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Max will have his Ellery CD release show at Mayo Street Arts on Friday, September 12 before heading out on tour. Max unplugged and came down into the crowd to wrap his set with “As Much a Rising Sun as a Setting One,” which is one of my favorites so I hope he’s not really planning to retire it. We sang along and it was a great end to a lovely evening. Max’s set wrapped about 10PM, so most of us pooped out before Clara Junken and Builder of the House. I like that OLS is doing these local shows every Tuesday this summer. You should definitely check them out! And the shows are only $5! Win!

xo,

bree

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Josh Ritter

Saturday, July 12, 2014

L.L.Bean, Freeport, Maine

I hadn’t seen a show in almost two months (anyone else feel like concert offerings this spring were slim?), so when our friend Bartlett sent a group email invite to join him for Josh Ritter at L.L.Bean, I decided to go for it even though I usually boycott those shows. (I really wish L.L.Bean would build an amphitheater worthy of the great artists they bring to Freeport). Of course, in true Bartlett fashion, he was the last one to join us before the show for a group dinner at Grittys. Michelle has been housesitting in Freeport, so she went at midnight to set up a blanket for the group and got us as good a spot as is possible at an L.L.Bean show. As we arrived at our awesome spot (thanks, Michelle!), students of mine at an adjacent blanket chimed “Hi, Ms. Candland!” in unison—it was nice to see you, girls! AH! I almost missed the most important detail of the entire night—this was almost six-week-old Mira’s FIRST CONCERT!

Mira's first concert!

Mira’s first concert!

Most of the gang had never seen Josh Ritter, but wanted to see him because we know that our dear friend and gifted singer songwriter Max Garcia Conover (who sadly couldn’t make it due to car trouble) credits Josh as one of his strongest musical influences. Josh Ritter is always a pleasure to see live. I don’t there’s a person happier to be on stage performing than he is—Josh is most often seen smiling from ear to ear. There’s something nice about being around that kind of joy that makes me go back to Josh’s shows time after time. My friend Grace was also excited to be working that night—her sign language interpreting during the show was a blast to watch!

This is the best view a blanket set out at midnight will get you at an L.L.Bean show.

This is the best view a blanket set out at midnight will get you at an L.L.Bean show.

Max Garcia Conover and Josh Ritter. May 2013. Courtesy of Chris Bartlett.

Max Garcia Conover and Josh Ritter. May 2013. Courtesy of Chris Bartlett.

Grace was so expressive!

Grace was so expressive!

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“Hopeful” was the first song of the night and it’s one of my favorites. Josh talked about how thrilled he was to be playing with his fabulous band and it was great to see those familiar faces on stage, too. Multi-talented Austin Nevins is incredibly gifted on guitar (here’s my post from a show Austin played with Dietrich Strause and Max). Sam Kassirer not only plays keys with Josh, but also produces amazing music from the likes of Josh, David Wax Museum, and Lake Street Dive at The Great North Sound Society in rural Parsonfield, Maine.

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“Here at the Right Time” and “Change of Time” were both lovely. Josh joked about being from Idaho, who are a “proud seafaring people” from the banks of ancient Lake Idaho. I took a peek behind me and noticed my dear friend Ken and his kiddo Liam dancing and singing along. I ran over to join them for a “Kathleen” sing-a-long.

The view from the dancing section.

The view from the dancing section.

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These two.

These two.

Josh talked about how much he loves Maine and said that he’s not allowed near sharp objects during recording sessions (at Sam’s place in Parsonfield) because it often ends badly. During a recording session, he opened a can of beans and cut himself badly enough that he needed medical attention, and instead of driving the hour to the nearest hospital, a kind veterinarian sewed him back together. Sounds like a perfectly Maine scenario to me. They wrapped their set with another of my top favorites, “Joy To You Baby,” which particularly resonated with me as a recently brokenhearted single person–“There’s pain in whatever/We stumble upon/If I never had met you/You couldn’t have gone/But then I couldn’t have met you/We couldn’t have been/I guess it all adds up/To joy to the end.” It’s easier hearing wisdom about love and loss come from Josh’s beaming face, somehow.

They said goodnight, but came back to serenade us with “The Temptation of Adam” and to rock out on “To the Dogs or Whoever.” My friend Colin (who I met because of whatbreesees.com–lucky me!) posted a set list from the night on setlist.fm (in case you’re curious about what you missed). So glad for a much needed night out with good friends and good music.

xo,

bree

 

Thanks, Colin!

Thanks, Colin!

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Support Max Garcia Conover’s crowd-funded album, Ellery

MGC

Max Garcia Conover at One Longfellow Square. November 2013.

Max Garcia Conover at One Longfellow Square. November 2013.

We have just 23 days left to support Max Garcia Conover’s upcoming album, Ellery. I’m really excited to have “You’re the Farthest I Go” and “Wildfires Outside Laramie, WY” on CD so I can listen again and again to these beautiful songs featuring the lovely vocals of Sophie Nelson. You can support Max’s campaign at a variety of levels, and he’ll send you unlimited free copies of Ellery to give to friends or leave behind in a local coffee shop for strangers to discover. Let’s help Max get this album done right!

xo,

bree

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My posts about Max–wow, I’ve seen him a lot!

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Max Garcia Conover and Friends

Friday, January 24, 2014

Lion’s Pride, Brunswick, Maine

Portland’s Max Garcia Conover is playing a couple of weekly shows, and he’s bringing his friends. MGC plays Mondays at Flask Lounge in Portland from 6-8 PM and Fridays at Lion’s Pride in Brunswick from 9-11 PM.

What a delightful Friday. We gave midterm exams at school for half the day. A bunch of us gathered to grade exams together in Dennis’ room in the afternoon—he has a classroom with windows in our predominantly windowless school. My boyfriend Jeff texted to say that he had an unexpected night off and could join a growing group of us for a dessert gathering and then Max’s first Lion’s Pride Friday night show! I was so excited!

Jeff and I had dinner at Bangkok Garden and one of my seniors was our server. She was excited to see me out on date night and told me she very much approved when Jeff was out of earshot. We picked up Will and headed over to Chris and Courtney’s for delicious treats and some time to catch up with friends before heading over to Max’s show.

An impromptu idea to rally the group for Max’s first Friday night show at Lion’s Pride was wildly successful. By the middle of his first set, the room was completely full with at least twenty of us—including most of the teachers in our friend group who decided to rally for Max late on a Friday night. I hadn’t seen Max play in a few months, not since he opened for David Berkeley back in November at One Longfellow Square. It was great to hear him sing the songs that I play on repeat while I’m driving or grading—like “Thatch House” and “The Creek Woman Poet” from Birches Lo.

Max Garcia Conover

Max Garcia Conover

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Max claims to hate sing-alongs because they can be super awkward, but he always makes us do them anyway. We stood and belted “Honey, we’ve been trying…” during our audience participation part on “The Start of Fables” and it felt really good to be awake that late on a Friday night and singing with a room full of good friends. I liked Max’s new song, “Home,” and the idea behind it—that we think the place we grew up in is really lame until we leave and come back (I haven’t had that moment yet, but I grew up in Bangor).

Singing along with MGC

Singing along with MGC

Max said he is thinking of these weekly shows as a curator might, and that he hopes to bring friends to the mic every week. Sammie Francis and her new husband (!), Max Taylor, did a couple of songs. Our dear friend Brady joined Max on The Avett Brothers’ “Murder In The City.” I love Max’s story about meeting Jim Avett (the Brothers’ dad) at The Great Blue Heron Music Festival, but I’ll let you hear that story for yourself some week.

Sammie Francis and Max Taylor

Sammie Francis and Max Taylor

Brady and Max

Brady and Max

Max gave a lovely introduction about his teacher and music mentor, Ken Templeton. Ken and I graduated from Bowdoin together and he is someone I love running into so we can catch up about the bands we’re currently listening to and whatever Daytrotter session we last fell in love with. Ken took the stage and said that his professor Pete Coviello said that that best teachers teach kids how to love something and he was happy to have done that with music for Max.  Ken said he was so taken with The Lone Bellow (I will take full credit for introducing y’all to them) when we saw them together in November, that he decided to play “Watch Over Us.” I hadn’t heard Ken play in AGES and I was floored by his power. I was so stunned that I forgot to clap when he finished the song, too! Amazing, Ken!

Ken Templeton

Ken Templeton

Max sent the tip jar around and joked that if you claim deductions on your taxes for musical equipment because music is your profession but that you don’t make any money at it, then the IRS demotes it to “hobby.” He called his fiancée, the lovely and talented Sophie Nelson, up to the mic to sing “You’re the Farthest I Go.” (They did a great Damien Jurado cover together earlier in the evening, too). That new song is so very sweet and Max and Sophie sound great together.

Sophie and Max

Sophie and Max

Here are some things I was reminded of Friday at Max’s show:

1. 9-11 PM doesn’t feel as late if you’re surrounded by friends.

2. Be ready to sing along.

3. Don’t be the person who doesn’t have any cash for the tip jar.

4. These friends are the best anyone could ask for. We filled the room to support Max, as always.

Come out some week and join us.

xo,

bree

PS—Max gave out copies of his first full-length album, Burrow, at Lion’s Pride. Jeff and I listened to it in the car on Saturday and Jeff’s youngest son, Max, was already singing along to it by Sunday morning.

I love this blurry picture I snapped of Max at the end of the night.

I love this blurry picture I snapped of Max at the end of the night.

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