Usually I stay home on Friday’s getting ready for the next week of TWM and planning out places to go and report about. But last Friday, my friend Chris Erikson and his band the Wayward Puritans were having a CD release party and show at the Lakeside Lounge to celebrate Chris’ new CD of original tunes called, Lost Track of Time. Chris and the Wayward Puritans have been featured on my other two blogs, 365 Bars and MAD and I wanted to include a post featuring them here at TWM. On a sad note, The Lakeside Lounge is closing next week so I also wanted to go pay my respects to this great East Village bar that has hosted so many bands and musicians through the years. Okay, let’s trip back in time to last Friday night. Sherman, set the Wayback Machine to April 20th, 2012!
Here we are, the Lakeside Lounge, sadly this will be the last appearance of this classic East Village bar on TWM. Let’s go in and have a drink and drown our sorrows.
As usual, I’m way early for the show, so there’s plenty of seats at the bar, let’s go snag one.
Lucy was the pretty bartender on duty and here she is serving up an ice-cold bottle of Budweiser.
Johnny was seated next to me and we had a nice conversation about music and New York City. And it turns out it was his birthday Friday night! Cheers and happy birthday, Johnny!
I always loved this sign and at least it will live on at this post.
The jukebox here is one of the best in town. Click here for a list of the diverse artists featured in this magical box of music.
Hopefully the Photobooth will live on after the Lakeside Lounge shutters. It’s not owned by the bar and you can read more about it at this post at EV Grieve.
Some photos taken in the booth decorate this lit up pole at the bar. I’m sure going to miss this place. I hear some commotion in the back, maybe the show is about to begin.
The band is setting up their gear and it’s a packed room for tonight’s show.
Here’s the set lists and some notes on the stage floor. I think it's just about show time!
Ladies and gentlemen...Chris Erikson and The Wayward Puritans, featuring...
Chris Erikson on lead vocals and guitar...
Jay Sherman-Godfrey on guitar and harmony vocals...
Jason Mercer on bass and...
Will Rigby on drums and percussion. These are the same musicians that played on the CD.
Chris and the band played the entire CD during the show. Other guests showed up as you’ll soon see.
I wasn’t the only one snapping photos in the crowd. I wonder if she has a blog?
As I said, the room was crowded, but I was lucky enough to squeeze into a space next to these two pretty and friendly women, Kamy and Alexandra. This was their first time seeing Chris and The Wayward Puritans and they were very duly impressed.
On the third song, Erik Della Penna got on stage and added some fine lap steel guitar to the mix. Erik is part of a two-man band called, Kill Henry Sugar. Erik plays lap steel on two songs on Lost Track of the Time.
Here Cliff Westfall joins in on harmony vocals and he’s sings harmony on a few songs on the CD as well. Cliff is the front man for a band called The Steamboat Disasters.
And last, but not least, in the lineup of guest stars at the show is Florence Dore singing harmony.
Chris and Florence have been friends for a long time. Chris played guitar and sang in her band when she lived in New York and she put out a CD called, Perfect City in 2002, which Chris played guitar on and sang (Perfect City was produced by Eric Ambel, who is the co-owner of Lakeside Lounge). Florence sings harmony on the song, “When It All Comes Down,” on Chris’ new CD.
Here Chris is belting out a stinging solo on stage as the show is coming to a close.
And here’s the band and guest stars singing one last encore. As good as the other shows I’ve seen by Chris and The Wayward Puritans, this has to be at the top of the list!
Lost Track of the Time
Lost Track of the Time starts off prophetically with a song called, “All I Need.” The rollicking number kicks off with the line, “All I need is a ticket and I’m ready to go,” and this collection of tunes fires up like an empty fifth of Jack Daniel’s being smashed against the concrete wall of a dive bar signaling the start of one rowdy, raucous party. Jangly, swampy guitar riffs are thrown out like party favors and the song chugs along like someone from the bar car has hijacked the train and is steering it towards Juarez, Mexico with a bottle of tequila in one hand. The next song, “Ear To The Ground,” keeps the party going with a catchy chorus that will be imbedded in your brain, but you’ll be thankful for the earworm.
The brakes get hit for, “Call It Even,” a country-flavored gem that brings to mind someone on a nine day bender telling the bartender at closing time how his woman skipped town with his best friend and his bank account. The honky tonk piano, pedal steel guitar and Chris’ wailing, plaintive vocal is enough to bring a tear to George Jones’ world-weary eyes. The tune “Guilty” conjured up the Rolling Stones circa “Beggars Banquet,” not in an imitative way, but with the same selling your soul to Lucifer spirit.
The core band on the CD is Chris and his band, The Wayward Puritans consisting of Chris on vocals and guitar, Jason Mercer on bass, Jay Sherman-Godfrey on guitars and harmony vocals and Will Rigby on drums. They play off each other like seasoned veterans because that’s exactly what they are. There’s also nine other guest musicians contributing, harmonies, piano, pedal steel guitar, organ, mandolin and harmonica. If you’re like me and you’ve been sick to your stomach from all the generic American Idol type music floating around, the remedy can be found within the grooves of Chris Erikson’s, Lost Track of the Time.
You can listen to samples of Lost Track of the Time and buy the CD or MP3's at the following online outlets:
CD Baby (Note: CD Baby has a notice that the CD is out of stock, but Chris told me he sent them a new batch and they will be available within a few days, so if you order from them, be assured you will receive the CD quickly.)
Chris generously gave me a CD at the show, but I went over to CD Baby and bought one anyway to support this great and original music. So I’m going to give out the one he gave to me as a prize to the person who leaves the first comment today!