The Biltmore Phil Harmonic: A Phil Collins Tribute Concert @ Biltmore -- 08/12/15

David Vertesi sure knows how to throw a hell of a party. Every year he and his lovely wife Ambrosia put together a show called Sing It Forward, to benefit the St James Music Academy. Now, about half way between the last one and the next one, Vertesi has organised another fundraiser, a tribute to the great Phil Collins. 

With a backing band consisting of Johnny Andrews on drums, Andrew Rasmussen on keys, Mike Young on bass, and Tristan Paxto on guitar, there was a rotating cavalcade of singers covering the whole spectrum of Phil Collins' career; from his days in Genesis, to his solo material, to his Disney soundtrack. 

And while it would be impossible to give a full rundown of the night, I will say a few of the highlights for me were Dan Moxon (and the rest of Bend Sinister on backing vocals) going "Against All Odds"; a surprise Shad covering Collins' cover of "You Can't Hurry Love" originally by The Supremes; a version of the Genesis song "That's All" by Willa, which rivalled Zeus as the definitive of that song; and, of course, "In The Air Tonight", as owned by Hey Ocean's own Ashleigh Ball. 

Click through to check out photos from every single singer on stage:

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One Night Stand II @ The Media Club -- 12/31/09

I think the best way to describe what happened last night would be that it was like watching a huge group party of Rock Band. Except instead of your tone deaf, rhythm-less friends, it was actual, talented musicians. And instead of plastic instruments, it was the real thing. One Night Stand saw members of a whole bunch of local bands join forces and celebrate the new year by collaborating for nearly three hours of cover songs. Bands represented included: Bend Sinister, Said The Whale, The Painted Birds, Elias, Poor Places and The Gentle Infidels with Laura Smith and Hannah Georgas. Numbering around a dozen members in total, there was a lot of rotating on and off stage for any given song.

They hit the stage at ten to play the first of three sets, which consisted of:
Gimme Some Lovin' (The Spencer Davis Group)
Want You To Want Me (Cheap Trick)
Bohemian Like You (Dandy Warhols)
I Melt With You (Modern English)
Last Night (The Strokes)
Billie Jean (Michael Jackson)
Lola (The Kinks)
Dancing in the Dark (Bruce Springstein)

Gimme Some Lovin' (perhaps best known form The Blues Brothers) had all of them on stage to kick things off, starting things off with a great energy. Maybe it was just cos it was the first set, but they still seemed to be getting into the swing of things, not to say anything was bad, but as the night went on they got looser and more comfortable (and possibly more drunk!) on stage, with the sets getting progressively more energetic. And interestingly enough, this was the second time I'd heard a cover of Dancing in the Dark this year!

They took a short break and were back at Eleven for some more fun:
Sweet Emotion (Aerosmith)
Whip It (Devo)
Crazy (Gnarls Barkley)
Don't You (Forget About Me) (Simple Minds)
Heroes (David Bowie)
Paper Planes (MIA)
El Scorcho (Weezer)
Beat It (Michael Jackson)

Sweet Emotion included not one, but TWO cowbells (one of which was played with such intensity that she broke the drum stick) and Whip It included the Devo hat, which stuck around the rest of the night.
I like that they went into more ambitious covers, with both Crazy and Paper Planes working great. The latter surprisingly awesome and hilarious, with everyone on stage channelling their inner gangsta'. I'm also curious to know how many people in there heard Heroes and thought it was a Wallflowers cover...

Another break just before midnight, for the countdown and celebrations before they were back to the music.
Against All Odds (Phil Collins)
Rebellion (Lies) (Arcade Fire)
The Weight (The Band)
Just What I Needed (The Cars)
Drinking in LA (Bran Van 3000)
Hey Jude (Beatles)

Against All Odds was the first song played after midnight, for people to slow dance... or sway by themselves...
Rebellion was a pretty damn good cover that tore things up, with the whole crowd screaming along to the LIIIEEES LIIIEEESS parts and from then on it was crazy energy til the end. The rest of the songs had most everyone singing along as well, even to Drinkin' In LA -- which was complete with Henry from Bend Sinister "storming" off stage due to his hatred of the song.
The night ended with Hey Jude, which again saw everyone on stage... all the band members AND random people who felt they were entitled to jump on stage too. There was kind of a funny/awkward moment where some drunk girl kept trying to wrestle the mic away from Hannah Georgas. But ultimately, everyone, both on stage and off, was singing/yelling along, especially at the end of the song. It was a pretty damn good way to end the night and welcome the new year.

There is a saying or superstition, I guess, that says that whatever you're doing at midnight is what you'll be doing for the rest of the year. If that's the case, I can't wait for whatever shows & music this next year has in store.