Wood Chips Fall at Portland’s Secret Society: @JaneSiberry @kdlang

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If you were to drive down this typical Portland street, you would never guess that 8 hours from the time this shot was taken, two of the most awesome musical artists would be taking the house down in one of the modest structures that line the curbs. The Secret Society is well hidden and easy to drive past. I know I did! But behind this seemingly paltry facade lives an entertainment mecca.

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Yep! This storefront is it. For real, I have seen puppet shows with a bigger marquee. But if you look twice (I had to) you can see the “flyer” for Jane Siberry’s show. Here, I’ll give you a better look. Still is hard to see, but it’s there.

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There is one fairly obvious clue that this place is a PLACE; and that is that it is flanked by two bars!

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Inside and upstairs  is a ballroom that seats about 120 people. Seeing Jane and k.d. like this was an unexpected delight. All the artists were practically within arm’s reach the whole time. Even though I stayed way in the back, I felt like I could have asked k.d. to “pass the butter” at any time.

The Show

For Jane Siberry fans it will be no surprise that this show was, well, “different”. Not exactly a holiday show, not exactly a spoken word performance, and not exactly a recital. Jane had 4 awesome artists with her (not counting k.d.). There was a pianist, a cellist, and two “back up” singers, who could have easily sold out the place on their own. Theses artists are  Rebecca Jenkins and Ali Hughes, and  WOW! Just shows you how extraordinarily  talented k.d. is. For real, if we had not known about k.d., we would think that these girls were the best ever.

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Jane was awesome. What an artist!  I did not see any evidence of anyone professionally recording the show, but there was an uber cute tech guy in the back monitoring the lights, sound and such. Not sure if he was also recording.

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OK…so what k.d. fans want to know is “what did k.d. sing?” The truth is, I do not fully know.  She sang twice, each time as “backup” if you can call k.d. a backup singer. I would say k.d. was on stage a total of 10 minutes, so getting pics was not so easy! She also was very focused on what she was doing. Not the most smiles I have seen on k.d. The first song she sang along with the other 2 artists and Jane. I believe it was a Jane original for this show. And, of course, because Jane and k.d. are crowd pleasers, they sang “Calling all Angels” as the very last song.

k.d.’s voices sounded strong. I do not think it has “missed a step”. I would have to say that the same is true for Jane Siberry as well. She seemed to hit ultra high notes just as she as done her whole career.

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I did want to mention how gracious k.d. was at this show. She played her part as a “guest” to a T. And even though the crowd, many of whom came JUST for k.d., kept barking requests, k.d. deferred politely and got off the stage fast. In fact, she was kind of like a ghost!  I did not stay after the show, but Jane was slated to take photos with fans and sign paintings and so forth for those who wanted that. Obviously, I do not know if k.d. also did this, but I kind of doubt it since it was Jane’s gig.

Since I was in Portland this weekend, I am pretty sure that k.d. attended a demonstration during the day in downtown Portland. Then she totally changed  gears and showed up to do this show. This impressed me the most. but then, I have been known to organize and attend many a demonstration in my time. So, kudos to you k.d. Maybe we will see more of this from you in the future.

So, that was my experience at the Secret Society.

11 Comments

  1. wow, so true but ….

    as i wrote some time back somewhere on a different blog, i was shocked by the behavior of the audience in 2012 when i saw kdl in montreal – the very last night of her very last concert on tour. sitting in the second row, close enough to reach out and touch the lip of stage front, i was thrilled beyond belief to be so close to her. but within minutes of her first song, the stage was rushed by 100+ (mostly) women who not only blocked my view but prevented me from actually seeing kdl from any angle. wow, was i angry and enough so that i thought – never again will i attend such an event. but …. as i also mentioned, there was no question that not only did this jamming seem like a ritual around her performances, she actually encouraged it. such flirting she did! such encouraging, such teasing, such smiles and laughter. as she twirled her red scarf and selected one woman (who had thrown half of herself on the stage) to wrap the garment around her neck, i actually found myself becoming jealous! it was then that i realized what fun i was having and how tantalizing she was, drawing me closer and closer, pushing others out of the way to get a better view and of course take a few videos/photos. i had become part of that mob, half ashamed and half ecstatic, but entranced by her every sensual move, all the while listening to the voice of an angel. i continue to be mesmerized by this beautiful woman who, yes, has an equally-matched soul and who – perhaps surprisingly to some – is a teacher to us all…. best, virginia

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  2. I have long wanted to see k.d. in concert, but the more I hear about how her fans act, the less I want to deal with it. I’m like you, Kath-can’t stand the noise, talking, rudeness, etc. Courtesy,respect and good manners seem dead, although I can remember the same problems at small concerts by my friends years ago that were the same. I have considered crawling under a rock and staying there, but with my luck, a police armored car would drive over the rock. I can see why old people (me, for one) think the world is going to hell in a handbasket. Trouble is, it really is….. I can’t be the only one who see this, can I? Thanks for these reports and pix. They are both wonderful.

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    1. Well, consider the source of this information. I am no spring chicken and not a night person either. So traipsing after kd at night in clubs is just about as natural for me as having feathers. But, they do scream really loud and yell out stuff. I am actually a very quiet soul who just feels that kd is not taken seriously enough past the “lesbian icon” thing. So, I am willing to endure blotto-ed self-absorbed fans who seem to think Jane and kd existed just for them at this show.

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  3. Aw…you are welcome. It was pretty great. Sadly, the audience annoyed me a lot. But that is more me…not big into crowds with frenzied fans…creepy for me. So I took the best pics I could and split ASAP. If people knew how much I hate clubs and crowds, they would really appreciate what I did!!! LOL

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  4. thanks so very much for your comments, pictures and insights, kath. the gracious nature of kdl and the brilliant composing of silberry …. oh, how i also wish i had been there! but thanks to you, i feel as if i had been your passenger. looking forward to many more of your episodes in your amazing journey of discovery …. best, virginia

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      1. They were not a bad audience at all. It’s just me that was annoyed. Some of them were kind of loud and they talked a lot during the show. But I do not think the artists could hear. A few were a bit rude (IMO) to Jane by demanding kd sing HER own songs (it was jane’s show after all). But like I said, I am a total loner, so crowds pretty much make me apoplectic!! If I could have gotten shots of kd in any other way, I would have. But…gotta go where she performs..ugh!! Why couldn’t I OCD over a Jesuit Monk!!! They are alone all the time! LOL

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  5. Both Jane and k.d. are magical artists, though for very different reasons. Together they are beyond description, says I. Jane puts on a wonderful show, as does k.d. I think this performance shows plainly k.d.’s classiest self and also that she has beautiful manners. ENVY your seeing this and glad you got to.

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