Thursday, April 2, 2015

The House that Blues Built

Sometimes I forget how important music is. Besides a commute, it can be difficult to find the time for it. And despite the fact that it makes things like doing dishes, folding laundry, and cleaning the apartment more pleasant, I forget to put it on. All. The. Time.

But honestly, is there anything that Ray Charles, Amy Winehouse, and B.B. King can't make easier? No, there really isn't. Like the powers granted to super heroes through such bizarre instances as being bitten by a radioactive spider or getting trapped in a gamma explosion, good music can make light work of anything. Put on an excellent playlist and run a marathon. Play Taylor Swift and get over a breakup. See what I mean? Super powers. Of course there is more to it than that, but finding the right inspiration -- and one that can get stuck in your head and help you battle back against any obstacles, at that -- is an excellent first step.

So where is the best place to get this experience in Boston? The House of Blues, of course. Even in a packed house with a standing room only ticket, everyone gets a great view. Actually, standing room only is, to me, a richer experience than sitting in this particular venue. And though I am not an expert in anything acoustical, I think the House of Blues sounds good from every location I have stood in. Maybe this just means it's loud, but in all locations and in all ways, I have always been very pleased by the sound.

Last week, my fiancee and I saw Matt Kearney at the House of Blues. On tour to promote the release of his new album Just Kids, Kearney's show was a sell-out. It was also spectacular -- drawing on the right balance of known hits and newer releases. If you are a fan of his, I would recommend his new CD, and if you haven't heard of him, why not give it a try?

The building itself, though, is a mainstay of Landsdowne Street. Clearly the street's primary and most well-known occupant is Fenway Park, but it is a testament to the House of Blues that Landsdowne would be greatly lessened in character and culture if ever B.B. King's venture were to move. The decorations, details, and adornments within create the same sense of cultural mix and clash that the venue experiences weekly with the variety of music and sound it hosts. In the same way that Fenway Park brings everyone together in one Red Sox uniform, the House of Blues hosts people whose love falls under the banner term of music, but it is a venue wholly without uniform. Fenway and the House of Blues are two sides of the same coin. And, not coincidentally, they are the two sides of Landsdowne. 

Til next time!