Gillian Welch and David Rawlings at P.S. 122

We saw Gillian Welch and David Rawlings last night at Town Hall (me, mikeskliar, and our friends Seth and John), opening for Bright Eyes, in a truly impressive show. They, of course, were amazing, but Bright Eyes blew me away. A huge band, at least ten people, all dressed in white, very loud, but very tight and very melodic. Oberst’s songwriting is outstanding and the arrangements were testimony to how much you can do to acoustic folk melodies.

But as good as it was, Monday night was secondary to Sunday night. Mike called me at the last minute and said that Gillian and David were doing an “unnamed music and comedy show” at PS 122 in the East Village. This is a small black-box theater and we had front-row seats; I didn’t take that many photos because David Rawlings could hear the shutter clicking. Which was fine, because I was too busy trying to understand what the hell he was doing on the guitar.

Comedian Demetri Martin did an occasionally funny series of routines, featuring at one point musical accompaniment from Rawlings, who also apparently plays the flute. Who knew?

Both of them provided musical accompaniment for a series of New Yorker cartoons by the host.

And some product and album cover ideas were presented for their approval … or not.

Both David and Gillian were embarrassed with childhood memories, David with some clumsy home movies and Gillian with a segment from her hometown TV station, which did a segment on her as part of a series about gifted children. At 17, she wasn’t sure if she was going to be a musician, an artist, a tri-athlete, or a scientist.

And Tim Blake Nelson joined them for a song.

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