You can’t go anywhere in Nashville without hearing live music, however hearing great live music might be a bit more elusive. But not if you were at 12th and Porter last night.
Loyal fans crowding the floors of the the downtown bar venue were all quite aware of the guys currently holding the #5 spot on the iTunes singles chart, but A Great Big World was new to me. I’ve heard their song with Christina Aguilera but that’s about all I knew. But before we get to them, let’s start with the openers. First there was My Red and Blue whose lead singer (I’m sure he’s heard this a million times) looks a lot like a European version of Eminem. In fact, if he announced to the crowd that he was from Detroit I would’ve shouted out, “We love you Marshall!” But he didn’t. So I didn’t. I don’t think he’s European either and for what it’s worth, this guy has a better singing voice than Eminem. But taking advice from the white rapper, My Red and Blue seems to be seizing their one shot, their one opportunity! They were really good. They performed original songs and even did a cover of Tal Bachman’s “She’s So High.” I really enjoyed their set!
Next up was the biggest surprise of the night for me. The female band plus one guy (that’s what I’m going to call them even though the guy is obviously a very important part of the team!) called Secret Someones. I have a feeling there one hit away from being the all female band plus one guy now called Not-So-Secret Someones. They were great! I don’t typically expect a pop/rock band to feature singers that can you know, actually sing. It seems like those kinds of bands are mostly rockers that can hold a tune well enough to make music. But time and time again, the vocals of Secret Someones really took me by surprise. Not only did they sing well, but they each had quarky personalities in the best possible way. They were just plain fun to watch. Plus, I always appreciate when a band plays hard, but you can still hear the lyrics. Perhaps that’s a shout out to their sound guy. So if you have a chance to go see either of these bands, My Red and Blue or Secret Somethings, you should go.
Of course, the night wasn’t near over. The headliners A Great Big World were still to come! If I’m being honest, I was worried that every song would be that sort of woe-is-me-my-heart-is-broken-let’s-go-get-some-pizza-at-Five-Points vibe you find in east Nashville. But as sure as pigs get muddy, the band kicked off with a few fast-paced songs that had me enamored with the melodies, the harmony of voices, and the lyrics the whole way through. They were entertaining, funny, comfortable on stage, and seemed genuinely happy (and thankful) to be in the position they were/are in, which is playing on a stage in Music City. Another win for them was when they incorporated a muted trumpet, a ukele, and a triangle. Yes, the triangular bar of metal you remember from church choir.
I’m so glad I was able to catch this awesome show! Much like Kings of Leon or Needtobreathe, there’s going to come a point where you’ll say, “Man, I shoulda seen ‘em back when tickets were affordable!” This is that time for these 3 bands. Check them out, you’ll be impressed and that will make you happy.
Wilderness Ratings for headliners A Great Big World:
Entertainment value: 8/10
Enjoyable Music: 10/10
Length of show:
Too short Perfect Too long
Encore: Not this time
Special Category- Did Christina Aguilara show up:
Was their music good enough to buy the whole album: Yes
Will you regret not going? Yes
-Out of the Wilderness