Here And Now Letters To Cleo Lyrics
Here And Now Letters To Cleo Lyrics – The alternative rock of Letters to Cleo may be hard to define, but it’s still hard to resist, as a nearly sold-out crowd of more than 900 fans found out Saturday night when the Paradise Rock Club played “Letters to Cleo: Homecoming 2019” presented.
The group, which had its heyday on the charts and across the country in the 1990s and broke up in 2000, has reunited regularly since 2016 and has made these holiday season forays back to Paradise something of a new tradition. On this year’s swing, the quintet played a night in Los Angeles – where singer Kay Hanley now lives – a night in Washington, D.C., a night at The Met Cafe in Pawtucket and then Friday and Saturday at their favorite Boston- venue.
Here And Now Letters To Cleo Lyrics
Along with the Hanleys, the reformed band includes original members Greg McKenna and Michael Eisenstein on guitars, and Tom Polce on drums. Longtime bandmate Joe Klompus has taken over bass for Scott Riebling, who has been busy with other things, for the past few years. LTC just released – last Tuesday – their first Christmas record, the “OK Christmas” EP.
I Want You To Want Me
Saturday night’s 18-song set provided ample proof that the LTC lineup is fully capable of creating as much rock ‘n’ roll intensity as at any time during their salad days. Just like back in their mid-90s, LTC’s music was an exciting mix of various elements, done in a way not really like anyone else’s. Despite their early 90s origins, they are not a grunge band, although they could probably be dubbed post-grunge. They’re not exactly a punk rock band, although that kind of ferocity and pell mell tempo is certainly a hallmark. You can also find a lot of roots-rock guitar sounds, and more than a little of Beantown’s garage rock history in their music.
For want of anything more precise, we’d call LTC perhaps the leading example of a Boston garage rock band-on-sonic steroids. All that frenetic thunder, however, was soured by Hanley’s sweet, trilling vocals – a style that also suited her very well in her post-LTC solo Americana albums. And to be honest, there were times on Saturday, just like there were when we saw them 20 years ago, when the power chords and racing rhythm section simply drowned out Hanley – we’ve always just wanted to see her vocals amped up more in the mix, so that the full effect of her voice and lyrics can be more appreciated.
The big news from Friday’s show, which we’re told wasn’t quite as packed, was that the Cars’ Greg Hawkes stopped by and joined LTC for the three-song encore, which featured two Cars songs, “Dangerous Type” and included “Bees”. Bye Love.” Alas, he wasn’t in the house on Saturday, but the encore segment with the charmingly quirky Speedy Ortiz band members joining in on the fun was cool anyway, with a definite rock’n’roll Christmas theme.
Saturday’s 80-minute show opened with the no-holds-barred punk charge of “Demon Rock,” with Hanley, in a black Speedy Ortiz T-shirt and jeans, appearing to serve notice that the band was serious. It cut just a bit against that boisterous rocker image when Hanley would stretch back between verses and sip a cup of hot tea. A bit later, the soaring power of “Four Leaf Clover” was another triumph, where that rhythm section and those brain-pounding guitars were at their best.
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“Big Star” could have slipped into some kind of plodding metal mode, but the guitars added some tasty nuances that gave it a more ruminative air. And who could possibly resist the tougher version of Nick Lowe’s “Cruel to be Kind” that had much of the crowd screaming and singing along. That excitement level was quickly surpassed with a sprint through “I Got Time.”
The multicolored portrait of a romance turned sour on “Awake” gave Hanley a chance to showcase some of her interpretive skills amid a more mid-tempo, nuanced arrangement. And it might have been a surprise to see that the band’s biggest hit wasn’t saved for the end of the set, but played about two-thirds of the way through, the 11th tune. But 1994’s “Here and Now” itself is such a prime example of how the band elevated garage rock components into something incredible that the audience sang, danced, and in the case of a 40-year-old man, with such madness claimed that they could I called it the climactic moment.
But a little later, in one of the most skillful choices of a cover song (that they’ve done way back when), LTC uncorked their own visceral take on Cheap Trick’s “I Want You To Want Me,” with perhaps even more momentum than the original, and the advantage of having the far more seductive vocals of Hanley.
The musicians returned for the encores in Christmas hats, and in Hanley’s case, a Christmas sweater jacket. The LTC song “WTFAMP (The Christmas Song)” tells a little story of how the holidays reminded the singer that someone wasn’t quite worth her time, and the harsh guitar chords told you she meant business. With Speedy Ortiz members helping out – also with an electric glockenspiel – LTC then did their new “Miss You This Christmas” as almost a ballad. But it was back to rock for a cover of the Mighty Mighty Bosstones’ “Xmas Time (Sure Doesn’t Feel Like Christmas time),” which achieved the neat trick of being lively, yet wistful and a little melancholy.
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And for one last extended rave-up to end the night, LTC and their pals did The Kinks’ “Father Christmas,” once again injecting just a little more raucous rock power into that old chestnut. There was even a gentle interlude to allow a glockenspiel solo, from Speedy Ortiz’s Sadie Dupuis, before the fiery finish.
FRIDAY NIGHT: On Friday, we caught Booker T’s book and concert tour at the Narrows Center in Fall River where the legendary Memphis soul man arrived after already selling out all copies of his new memoir, “Time Is Tight” at previous stops. But it was a dazzling two hours of music and stories, with Booker T’s current quartet a crackerjack unit that includes his son Ted on guitar. The evening began with Booker T reading a few pages from his book, then taking questions from the audience for about half an hour. After a short break, Booker T returned with the band and played a 90-minute show that included some of his best-loved hits and some other classics he contributed to.
From the swampy version of the Western movie theme “Hang ‘Em High” to the blues classic “Born Under A Bad Sign”, to his 1967 jam on Gershwin’s “Summertime” Booker T wowed the crowd of 250. Instrumental hits such as “Green Onions”, “Hip Hugger” and “Soul Limbo” were simply irresistible, and Ted’s vocals and solos on “Blue Jean Blues” proved that he was a star in the making, and the band’s rhythm- section was absolutely killer. But a Booker T on acoustic guitar reading of Otis Redding’s “Sittin’ On the Dock of the Bay” was extremely moving (Booker T played piano on the original) and his duet with Ted on Prince’s “Purple Rain” was sublime. But it might have been the instrumental jam on “Melting Pot” that stole the night, soul, jazz, funk and rock, all delivered with joy and exuberance by one of the best bands we’ve seen this year.’Here & Now’ – How Letters To Cleo Turned A Coffee Table Book Into An Iconic ’90s Song
Letters to Cleo came out of Boston’s early ’90s music scene, at a time when other local youngsters like Belly and Buffalo Tom were well on their way to the national spotlight. Their debut Aurora Gory Alice was an instant hit, charting on the Billboard 200, and the single “Here & Now” charted immediately on the Billboard Hot 100.
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But we all know how the saying goes – it takes a lot of hard work to become an overnight success.
The band spent years forming and reforming, rehearsing and playing around town before recording an album locally—which premiered at SXSW and quickly landed the band a record deal. Two more albums – and songs on an endless number of popular ’90s soundtracks – followed before the band called it quits in 2000. It would be seven years before they reunited, and after playing a few shows “here and there” they released the 2016 EP Back to Nebraska, performed a sold-out homecoming show that we were thrilled to catch , and has established an annual trip home for a series of performances at the Paradise (2018 dates and tickets can be found here.)
Now living in Los Angeles, singer Kay Hanley has turned her experience into an entertainment career—a path she never imagined possible for herself growing up in a blue-collar household in Dorchester. But her road to success did not come without its bumps. We caught up with her to talk about that journey, the Boston female music scene that inspires her,