Seth Yacovone Band
w/ People Like You
Saturday, December 16, 2017
Bar & Restaurant: 5:00pm
Seth Yacovone Band
The Seth Yacovone Band grew out of Burlington, VT in the summer of 1995. The band’s first gig was January 2, 1996 at Nectar’s in Burlington. At that point, the group played traditional blues. As word started to spread and a fan base began to build, the band played more gigs, including opening for Koko Taylor, Ian Moore, and Mike Welch. In August of 1996, the manager of Phish (another Burlington band) asked the band to play at Phish’s Clifford Ball in Plattsburgh, NY — the band’s first show outside of Vermont. That fall, the band began to grow musically, still playing blues but beginning to experiment with improvisation. At this time gigs in Portland, ME; Albany, NY; and Boston were added. One year later, the band released their debut album, Bobfred’s Bathtub Minstrel. The following spring a live CD, Yessir!, was captured at Club Metronome in Burlington. The summer found the group opening for B.B. King, the Neville Brothers, Dr. John, and Storyville.
In November of 1998, Yacovone was invited to sit in with Phish, playing to a crowd of 14,000 at the Worcester Centrum in Worcester, MA. This gave a boost to Yacovone and the band, creating a buzz among new fans all over New England. They headlined their first show in December at Higher Ground in Winooski, VT, and played a sold-out show at the House of Blues in Cambridge, MA. In July of 2000, the Seth Yacovone Band released their third album, Dannemora. Although this album still contained elements of blues, it branched out into new territory, showing more of a jam band/groove side. Today the band continues a heavy touring schedule, primarily in the northeastern U.S. Phish lyricist Tom Marshall signed the band to an exclusive management contract and in 2002 they released their first disc under his influence, the bluesy Standing on the Sound.
People Like You
People Like You is a freewheelin’ freak folk band from Portsmouth, NH. It’s music by the people, for the people, with no specific “people” in mind. Juxtaposing psychedelic alt-rock madness and gypsy-folk mischief with curious vocal/lyrical content and bizarre pop sensibilities, the sound is charismatic, inspired, a bit haunting, kooky, and captivating. It is strange, yet familiar like a new friend you swear you’ve known all of your life. It’s the kind of thing that’ll kick your brain, rattle your bones, drop your jaw, tickle your fancy, turn your head and make you say, “Huh… I can get down with that.” The shows are amusing to say the least and an open invitation for everyday people, the straights, the freakers, and the funkies to get in on it, get weird, have a ball, and be a part of it all. It’s in the name – People Like You.
Reality distorting stage antics and offhand chitchat that tugs at your head and heart strings will at times leave the audience at a loss for words, until a whimsically solicited crowd interaction or an unpredictably seamless transition back into the music breaks the silence. Their freaky, folksy songs can take a trip anywhere at any time, bending and breaking genres along the way. The singer/songwriter tandem of Eli Elkus and Andrew Polakow is what psychedelic babies are made of. The two writers compliment one another so effortlessly, at times it is difficult to tell who is writing (or singing) what. It is so uncanny, they are often mistaken for brothers (Elkus’ brother is in the band, but it is drummer Max Elkus). The arrangements, groove changes, and melodic components of the songs are so intriguing it is sensibly easy to overlook the anomalous lyricism that is the nucleus of the two wordsmiths’ psychedelic brain-child. If you can, in the midst of dancing the heels off your shoes to Max’s jazz-driven grooves, feeling the colors of Rob Littlefield’s bass rumble your stomach, the ivory of Justin Sheriff’s keys tickle your ears, and the banter between Andrew’s atypical electric guitar tonalities and Eli’s flamenco-esque barehanded rhythms, lend an ear (or two… or three!) to the words that are being sung.
No matter the venue, be it a backyard or a barroom, the music makes the people move. People Like You keeps people on their toes and noggins nodding from the first beat to the last. One does not observe a People Like You show, by attending, you become part of it. This animated band of troubadours is taking their freak folk sound and reinventing the live show experience as we know it and the people are coming out of the woodwork to see what the hullabaloo is all about as the band is quickly gaining a cult-like following of People People. And for once, it truly is about the people… as they say at most every show, “We’re just People Like You!” It’s a family thing.