Monday, November 19, 2012
C R Avery and the Madison 22 Review
3 Nights of Debauchery in So Ont
Got CR Avery being backed by the Hamilton Philharmonic for a quick set this summer but it's been a lean year of music out of the man from East Van.
He's bringing his dancing friends along to entertain, titillate and warm your cockles this winter. While burlesque may not be a lost art someone has definitely misplaced it. A refreshing change to see titillation in place of the no-secrets exposure the internet provides.
We're at the same old haunts; The Pearl in Hamilton, The Rivoli and Dakota in Toronto. I go on ad nauseum about CR but you only have to see him once to be converted. The beauty of it is when you see him for the first time I'll be seeing him for the first time too...or this incarnation. It's never boring and never the same. He's been through town as a solo artist, with a stand up bass supporting him, with a full rock band, with a string quartet, with a gospel backing group, with a full philharmonic orchestra and now...with a burlesque show. Next year I expect knee cymbals.
Night one sees The Pearl Company Theater packed to capacity. CR moves from banjo to piano to carnival barker, as the evening requires. A lot of new songs tonight and the older ones are re-arranged, especially the smash hit-single of 2015, Dungeon of Love. Good show, if a little subdued for CR.
The Rivoli on Queen St West loves CR Avery. And he loves it back. Everyone is excited tonight. Friends and family mix with fans and fanatics. Some are little more excited than others and forget they are in a public place, not their living room, but that's Friday night in TO.
Opening the set is rock-a-billy sweetheart Ginger St James. An unexpected gift. Think I'll vote for CR.
Travel issues tonight. Left a little later than normal and walk in just as Ginger is getting into her opening set. I like her.
CR is peaking tonight. Three times he walked into the audience for an unplugged song. When on the stage he was bombastic, improvising more than he has the past couple nights. I'm Canadian gets a new verse. No Anne Murray intro to Dinner For One, short set tonight as The Rizdales take the stage at 10. He does take the time for a salacious harp solo.
Set List: (same all 3 nights except for the addition of one poem at The Dakota)
Motel (50 Miles Out of Town) - banjo
Midnight Gold Mining -w/ Madison 22 and band
Explicit Lyrics - piano, band
I'm Canadian - band
Big in Japan - w/ Sassfarilla Fox
4 AM Text - guitar, unplugged in audience
Smooth Operator - CR on chair, Madison 22 and band on vocals
Dinner For One (piano, band)
Blues Harp - Madison 22 Review dance
Solemn Promist To You That I Keep - piano,band
Poems - Thin Walls 95.3 FM
- New Messiah
- Do They Know How To Play Zombie Zoo?
- A Crowd Favourite Under the Big Top Takes on the World (Dakota only)
- Pretty Simple Funeral Arrangements
Heart Is As Black As Night - piano,band, Sassfarilla Fox Black Swan dance
Where Cain and Abel Are Buried -banjo, unplugged in audience
Dungeon of Love