Saw Michael Manring @ the Tin Angel

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by oddentity, Jan 24, 2002.

  1. oddentity

    oddentity Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Last night, I went to see Michael Manring at the Tin Angel in Philadelphia. Saying it was a phenomenal show would be a huge understatement! :D

    The place was pretty crowded - it might have been sold out, I'm not sure. Opening for Manring was a guitarist named Alex DeGrassi. He was very good, but I found his style a little on the bland New-Agey side. Sort of Michael Hedges Lite. Anyway, I enjoyed his set. MM came out and played bass with him for the last song of the set. He used a gorgeous custom Zon Sonus, with what looked like a quilted bubinga or koa top and a Hyperbass-style neck and cutaway. It had Hipshot detuners but a regular bridge.

    After a break, MM took the stage himself. He tore through "Monkey Businessman" on Hyperbass, and followed with "La Sagrada Familia" (sp?) on the 'Sonus hyperbass'. Then he played a very cool Beatles medley on a small headless Zon- it included "Get Back" and "Here Comes the Sun" and maybe one or two others. Next, he described the Hyperbass and how he designed it with Joe Zon, and then played two companion songs specifically written for the Hyperbass- "Selene" and "Helios."

    Finally, he finished his set by playing a song with Michael Cullen, an acoustic guitarist. It was amazing as well... There might have been an encore after that but my girlfriend and I had to leave at the end of the regular set. I was disappointed to find that he had no CDs for sale at the merch table.

    Overall, I was completely blown away by Manring's virtuosity. But even more impressive was the sense of fun that pervaded every song -- you could see how much he was enjoying what he was doing, no matter how crazy and complicated it was. He was also very funny in a shy and self-deprecating way. It was a very humbling, and inspiring show. I hope he tours the east coast again soon....
  2. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000

    I've seen Manring live twice and had a couple lessons with him. Real nice guy with chops for days.

    I've seen Alex de Grassi. He's a recording artist in his own right and a former Windham Hill artist at that. Although he's good, I think he's one of those players who "takes taste to far".

    Hey, he makes a living playing music. That says a lot.
  3. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2001
    Manring will be back for the Reading Jazz Fest in March I think.
  4. oddentity

    oddentity Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Definitely - I respect him for making a living at music, and for being an incredibly talented guy. It's just that his music is not to my taste.

    Heh- at one point, Manring joked that he and DeGrassi were both "recovering New Age artists"! Half the audience laughed and the other half wasn't sure whether to laugh, or be offended! :p
  5. Hey, Oddentity, glad you enjoyed the show. He was in New York the day before (you told me) but I was too tired to go to the show that night. Now, I regret it. :(

    Oh well...

    Thanks for letting me know anyway.
    Talk soon.

    Mike J.
  6. oddentity

    oddentity Supporting Member

    Nov 20, 2000
    Ah well, maybe next time Mike. I would've really liked to have seen the show at Tonic, too... As Zulu pointed out, he'll be back on the East Coast for the Berk Jazz Fest in March -- maybe if we're lucky he'll do some more dates around that time!
  7. stephanie


    Nov 14, 2000
    Scranton, PA
    I would love to see Michael Manring in concert. I wish he'd come up my ways, I have a hard time getting around.

    As for Alex DeGrassi, I really enjoy that "New Age" stuff. Hehe. I listen to the PBS show "Echoes" every weeknite and they play a lot of him, Michael Hedges...and Michael Manring! They are my inspiration for my own music.