Walk Off The Earth in Bonn

Walk Off The Earth?  Somewhere that name said something…  I was still wondering precisely what though as I watched the video screen at Kunstrasen.  It was 8.05 pm and the band were in their dressing room (the green room as they called it) but announcing their imminent arrival on the video screen of Kunstrasen’s stage.  Ah yes, the video screen jogged my memory, there was a video I’d seen once of five youngsters singing Gotye’s ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ Not unusual in itself, but they were all playing a single acoustic guitar at the same time. The eye-catching video garnered over 175 million views.  Suddenly I realized this could be an interesting evening, both musically and visually – and so it proved.

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Cynthia Nickschas – Playing in the Park

Introducing Cynthia Nickschas to regular readers of this site would be a waste of words.  She’s appeared here in various guises and on various stages:  Stadtgarten, Harmonie, and this time around as part of Bad Godesberg’s ‘Musik im Park’ series. I’ll keep it short then for newcomers.  Nickschas made her mark as a street musician in the Bonn area, before being ‘discovered’ by top German singer-songwriter (Liedermacher)  Konstantin Wecker.  The lady has since put together her own (excellent) local band, played on ever bigger stages – and will move up to an even bigger one in August as support to Max Geissinger at Kunstrasen.  I last saw her play a fun set at Bonn Folk Club.

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Tears for Fears open Kunstrasen 2019

It was Back to the ’80s with a bang on Friday as the KunstRasen Season 2019 kicked off with appearances by Kim Wilde and Tears for Fears.  Around 5,500 people braved the extreme heat and were rewarded with great pop music from an era when MTV videos ruled and it seemed like every song had to have a synthesizer solo.  A time when British bands were showing how it was done – as tonights show ably proved.

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Bluesbenders in the Park

On the face of it Bonn and Chicago don’t have too much in common.  I am glad to say though that they do share a taste in both the playing and hearing of good raw electric Blues.   The best proof local proof being Bill Baum and his Bluesbenders, who once again proved at the Trink Pavillion in Bad Godesberg that you don’t need to be living on the streets of Chicago to play mean electric Blues.  You just need to feel it – and this quartet proves, time and again, that they do just that.

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Folk Club 103 with Cynthia Nickschas

I would be a happy man indeed to make it to100.  Bonn Folk Club though has now made it to 103 and, on Friday’s evidence, it has never been healthier.  A visit from the very popular and very talented Cynthia Nickschas to Dotty’s Sports Bar was always going to draw a big and enthusiastic crowd – and so it proved.  An evening of song, laughter, and …plants.

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Ismael de Barcelona & Juan del Rhin in Kessenich

Proof that you don’t need big halls and big bucks to hear top notch musicians was proven by Ismael Alcalde‘s appearance on a balmy Saturday evening in the unlikely location of a public library.  As it proved though, books are not just good to read, they also provide a good acoustic environment.  The solar roof of the Stadtbucherei St Nikolaus in Bonn-Kessenich also sent soft and shimmering Summer evening light onto the 100 or so people enjoying the music.

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Democracy & Music at Marktplatz

It’s coming to the end of a long and busy day in Bonn Marktplatz.  There are several hundred people watching Makeda as she sings ‘The Day I Loved You Most’.  But for a handful of votes, she would have instead been singing this very song tonight in front of several million people in Tel Aviv.  Eurovision’s loss is Bonn’s gain though, as she joins top young Bonn Jazz drummer Richard Münchhoff and his Band, to bring the curtain down on this Democracy Festival Day on Marktplatz with a classy presentation of Pop/Jazz.

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