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Andy White at the Celtic Knot

March 30th, 2008 · No Comments · Culture, Music, News, Performance

Andy WhiteTonight, Sunday evening March 30th, one of my favorite less-well-known-than-he-ought-to-be performers is playing a no-cover live gig up in Evanston.

If you aren’t familiar with him — and most people I know aren’t — the best way I can describe Andy White is to say that if Jonathan Richman had been born an Irishman, he might have turned out like Andy White. He’s got this wonderfully loopy offbeat sense of humor, a terrific storytelling style, and a certain rough-around-the-edges charm that seems more punk rock than folk-rock in its immediacy and spontaneity, despite the fact that he’s often playing an acoustic guitar.

He writes songs about going on a quest to find James Joyce’s grave, or hanging around with a bunch of eastern European punk rockers outside the headquarters of the secret police. He even wrote a charming song in support of his teenage gay cousin, who had just come out at the time. ( “It took a video of Torch Song Trilogy to tell his mother/ and a letter fell out of a novel to tell his dad …” )

I got hooked on him in the mid-90s when he teamed up with my idol Tim Finn from Crowded House/Split Enz, and Liam from Hothouse Flowers, for a fun album of experimental (yet very hummable and gracefully executed) tomfoolery called ALT. A few years later, on my first trip to Ireland, I wound up scouring record shops in Dublin for Andy’s back catalog because most of it wasn’t available in the US at the time.

A few weeks ago I found Andy’s MySpace page, and sent him a message along with my friend request saying that I’ve been a big fan for years and always hoped I’d get to see him perform live one day.

Well, magic of the Internets and all, Andy wrote me right back to say he was just about to start a US tour of small clubs, and he’d be playing the Celtic Knot in Evanston on Sunday March 30. Small room, no cover charge.

Which is tonight. If by any chance you’re not doing anything this evening and you can make it up to the Celtic Knot, I think you’ll be glad you did.

Here’s the info:

Sunday, March 30th
Storytelling and Music in the Snug with ANDY WHITE
8PM-11PM, No Cover

Celtic Knot
626 Church St
Evanston, IL 60201
(847) 864-1679

And here’s Andy’s MySpace page, if you want to hear a few of his songs ahead of time.


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