Friday, July 25, 2008

Chris Bergson: Modern Day Blues Man


I saw this guy a while back at Rockwood Music Hall. Me and a friend went on a random night to see what was playing and stumbled upon his show.

Rockwood was pretty noisy that night. We caught the tail end of a previous set, over which the audience talked and laughed at jokes and what not. Although the performer got a good reception after the music had finished, it didn't seem as if the crowd was there to see music.

Chris stepped on stage and I assumed it would be more of the same. He looked a tad shy; a short humble white guy coming to play the blues. Once he opened his mouth, however, the audience dynamic changed drastically. Everyone shut up as soon as they heard this deep, warm, soulful voice coming from such a small package. It only took about 5 minutes for everyone to warm up to the music, and from that point on, everyone was dancing, singing, drinking and having a great time.

Chris is a Brooklyn-based Blues man. I'm assuming he's from Gowanus Heights as that's the first track on his new album. Chris finger-picks a chinky Gibson guitar and sings with the soul of a 50 year-old delta man. His backing band lays down some nice funky grooves and Chris just goes at it. His signature voice is equally matched by his guitar work, he rips gritty blues rock with the twang of an acoustic finger picker. He played for about an hour that night. Each song had its own unique vibe and he managed to make an hour of relatively straight forward blues tunes go by in an instant.

Chris is playing a few times in the New York area in the upcoming month:

July 30th, 2008 - in Hoboken, NJ @ Scotland Yard - take the path train from Manhattan to Hoboken, it's about 2 blocks from the station. It's a pretty awesome pub/blues joint.

August 21st, 2008 - Rockwood Music Hall - on Allen St. just below Houston St. The best sound in the city. Go early because it's a tiny spot.

1 comment:

Kate said...

Hi Jon,

I work as Chris Bergson's manager and I just wanted to thank you for the nice review of Chris' show.

The Chris Bergson Band will also
be performing a free concert this Thursday, July 31 at River and Blues in Wagner Park in Battery Park City Park. The show starts at 7 pm and is part of NYC's River to River Festival. The band includes Jay Collins, Matt Ray, Matt Clohesy and Tony Leone plus a full horn section featuring Kenny Rampton and Chris Karlic.

Thanks and best wishes,

Kate Ross
KR Management