Last night Mason Jennings was playing an early show in Chicago, which meant that Kevin and I didn't have to fight Friday after-work traffic. He took the day off and I hurried home from my anatomy lab so we could be in Chicago with enough time to find decent parking, grab an early dinner, and do a little sightseeing.
We got there way too early, and as a result walked at least five miles, up and down the Lake Michigan shoreline, around the neighborhood where the show was to scout for a light dinner, and between the lake and the theater to find an independent (read: not Starbucks) coffee shop. We ended up at a place called Cafe Latakia on Broadway, which had a pretty good specialty drinks menu and absolutely no crowd, so we ended up staying for about an hour, reading a copy of The Onion that I'd picked up and playing checkers.
Dinner was nothing to write home about, and we actually ended up at the Lakeshore Theater around 6. I was overjoyed that we could go right inside, since the show wasn't scheduled until 7. A huge improvement over last time we saw Mason, which was at the Blind Pig in Ann Arbor: those tickets clearly stated "Show starts at 8:00," yet the door didn't open until 8:45 and the opening band didn't start until 9:30.
I was equally thrilled to get front-row seats on the left side of the theater, just off of center. Pieta Brown opened, playing about five songs, including a Muddy Waters cover. She has a beautiful voice, but all of her original songs sounded the same to me.
There were about 15 or 20 minutes after her set until Mason came out. It was a solo show, primarily acoustic guitar, but two or three songs on the piano, including "Sorry Signs on Cash Machines," and a few with the harmonica. He also covered Neil Young's "Out on the Weekend," which was gorgeous.
Two encores meant that the show ended around 9, so after waiting almost a half an hour to retrieve our car from the Park 1 garage and accounting for the time change, we were home just after 1. Love those early shows!
10 months ago