Last night I went to see April Smith And The Great Picture Show, a fantastic band with a sharp 1920s and 1930s sound that I heard about on All Songs Considered on NPR. The moment I heard April’s powerful voice singing in the podcast I knew that I had to see her live. She did not disappoint.
The band has one CD out right now, Songs For A Sinking Ship, so their set was pretty much an album show, but played out of order. It was very reminiscent of the NPR show I’ve embedded below. April’s voice was just as impressive as always and her wit and humor was well-received by the packed bar crowd at DC9, a cozy little bar off of 9th and U in the District.
Would I see April Smith again? In a heartbeat. The voice she’s got hidden behind that petite frame is just miles and miles beyond what I’m used to hearing on the radio and I love the attitude and charm April and the Great Picture Show just exude. April, herself, plays guitar on some songs along with the tambourine and her band consists of a bassist (double bass, not a bass guitar), drummer, keyboardist, and a guy who alternates between accordion, ukulele, and guitar. They showed up last night all decked out in 1920s gear, complete with skinny ties, suspenders, and newsies hats and they rocked the socks off of everyone there, even my date who had never heard of April Smith before that night.
Go and buy Songs For A Sinking Ship now. You won’t regret it.