Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Sean Lennon at Lucerna

Last night Štěpanka, Michael, and I investigated the Sean Lennon concert at Lucerna, motivated more by the standard vulgar curiosity than any actual familiarity with his music. (Actually, when Štěpanka first proposed the idea, I temporarily confused Sean with his half-brother Julian, whose early recordings I had at least heard.)
The house was pretty full, and we certainly didn't get to sit down. The opening act was a fairly strange but intriguing band, apparently French although we weren't sure what language they sang in. While this band seemed unlikely to be at all like Lennon (and it was not), the crowd seemed genuinely interested in hearing what they had to offer, which was a positive contrast to the time I saw the then-unknown Gin Blossoms open for the Neville Brothers. The pairing of the Gin Blossoms (who did have a few determined fans in the audience) with the Neville Brothers was one of those sadistic exercises beloved of booking agents who like to make the main act look good by finding an opening act that is either terrible or completely unlikely to appeal to the main act's fans. I recall thinking that, while I didn't especially care for them and they were clearly disgusted with the audience apathy, the Gin Blossoms had something. And indeed, not long thereafter, they had a hit song.
But I digress.
It must be remarked that, while it has no bearing on his music, Sean Lennon looks very much like both his parents. This means that he doesn't look all that much like either one individually, but each seems to have contributed equally to his appearance. Otherwise, perhaps, he goes a little more in his father's direction with the Nehru-like jacket and the choice of unusual glasses.
We were glad to find that he sings and plays guitar quite well and that his songs are very listenable. I wouldn't say they are exactly something new and startling that will take the musical world in an unexpected direction, but then, I don't really require this. When someone really does do something startlingly different in the arts, I'm either gratified or extremely unappreciative; while I value originality, I am not that interested in newness for the sake of mere novelty. So I'm perfectly content to enjoy things that are well done within their niche. And, to be sure, I wouldn't even think about whether Sean Lennon might be expected to come up with something groundbreaking if his parents weren't known for doing the artistically unexpected.
Sean Lennon probably hates it when people say this sort of thing. I would if I were him.
But while I'm sure he has a lot to put up with, I liked his performance and see nothing particularly weird about his wanting to be a musician. Let's keep in mind that historically, it has been normal and expected for entire families to be musicians or artists. Some aspect of the talent seems to be genetic and the rest is encouraged by environment. Having come from a family of (mostly nonprofessional) artists and musicians myself, I say it's no surprise he's a musician and draws, as really, what else would one expect? And while I thought he could improve on his between-song banter, there's something very likable about him.
You can see what he's up to in general at his web site, where the evidence suggests that he is fond of rabbits and probably even lives with one. If I hadn't liked the show, I daresay I'd still have to like anyone who draws rabbits in so many lifelike poses. His model appears to be a smallish, possibly dwarf, rabbit with upright ears who is apparently not given to the kind of melted-rabbit postures favored by Ms. Spots these days. But I think this rabbit is younger than Ms. Spots and, like Orion, more alert and not yet given to massive Flopsy-Bunnydom.
I write this from the couch, which, although we were not up all that late last night, I have barely left all day. Every so often I need some sort of a mental/physical health day, and by about nine in the morning, it was clear to me that I was not going anywhere. Now that I have spent the day on the couch and had a lot of sleep and soup, as well as having read quite a bit of someone else's dissertation and the last part of a biography of S.J. Perelman, I suppose it is within the realm of possibility that I might manage to leave the building again tomorrow. But not necessarily. I daresay that what I really need is some time with the Spotted Pair, although what with the time difference they are probably in mid-nap right now.

2 Comments:

Blogger P'tit-Loup said...

I do love the rabbit drawings, they are so life like. One of the link, you can hear the rabbit eating, which so reminded me of my sweet little guy we had a few years back. They are some good little friends!

February 11, 2007 12:24 AM  
Blogger Karla said...

Yes, when one has known a good rabbit, it's impossible to forget. (Are there bad rabbits? I mean, other than Fierce Bad Rabbits as in the Beatrix Potter book. There are definitely naughty rabbits and rabbits with difficult personalities, but I prefer to assume that at heart they are all good rabbits.)

February 11, 2007 8:08 PM  

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