The gentle melodic vocals of the opening act, Erin Rae were a soothing start to the evening. But it did make me consider getting a coffee during the intermission.
The eclectic audience welcomed the quirky humor and unique sounds of Brett Dennen and his band. His voice might best be described as a bit nasally and semi-whiney but in the most appealing way. He presents with a bit of awkwardness and goofiness, that reflects a realism I always appreciate.
The Cedar Cultural Center, an iconic Minneapolis venue run entirely by volunteers, offers an intimate live show experience in an auditorium-like band room with folding chairs set in a half circle, right up to the stage, as well as a few standing-room elevated platforms and benches along the back wall and sides.
By the time the music began, it was standing room only, and even that was filling in. Brett Dennen’s following is loyal and many were in attendance, shouting out song titles they were hoping to hear.
Dennen’s corny comedy, along with his energy and clear love for his craft carried strongly throughout the night. Heads were bobbing, toes were tapping and the crowd even joined in at times, excitedly singing along to hits like “Wild Child” and “People I Love” where every band member had a chance to chime in vocally.
This was the final night of Dennen’s Here’s Looking at you Kid tour, promoting his newest EP, which was the second, in a two-part collaboration with Dan Wilson. The first, titled Let’s… was released earlier this year.
I had the opportunity to sit down with Brett Dennen this summer, when he opened for Jason Mraz at the Minnesota State Fair, to discuss his recent work. Read that Music in Minnesota interview here.