Monday, March 20, 2006

Eric and Levi: An Evening of Gay Acoustica

So tonight my buddy Kevin and I went down to the Mint on Pico Blvd. to check out two very talented singer-songwriters, Eric Himan and Levi Kreis, both of whom I've written stories about. I've seen Levi perform before, but have never seen Eric play live. What an experience. Himan (a fellow Pennsylvanian who currently lives in Pittsburgh) is one helluva talent, with an expressive voice and extremely competent guitar playing. His songs are at once emotionally resonant and unforgettable. He's such a softie, which I love. The irony is that on the outside, he looks like that sh#t-kicking bad-ass you always wanted to get it on with. (Talk about the perfect combination, right?)

Eric started the evening, performing a great set of some of his best tunes. At one point, he invited Levi up onstage with him for a cover of Phil Collins' "In the Air Tonight" that was way cool. Eric's voice even carried a bit of that Collins weight in it, and Levi's forboding piano work provided a haunting backbone to the song. Seeing these two extremely talented men sharing the stage together was quite the experience, and it's obvious the sold-out crowd thought so as well, as they clapped and whistled like crazy when the song was over.

Then Levi took the stage, and let me tell you: WHOA! I've seen Levi play before, but never like this. There was just something, um, "in the air tonight" with him. He came to life in a way he hadn't at the Zephyr Theatre earlier this winter. This time, when he performed tunes like "I Should Go," "With You" and especially "Lonely Sunday Morning," his words -- and especially his gorgeous voice -- reached right into my chest and twisted my heart around. I had to wipe my eyes a few times during his set. Afterwards, Kev and I hung about and chatted with both Eric and Levi, as well as my buddy, Misadventures in the (213) author Dennis Hensley, who was also there to see the show. Eric was such a stone-cold fox with his tattoos and all, but it's that boy's smile that just lights up the room when he's onstage. Not to mention his music. It's a good thing that boy lives in Pittsburgh, 'cuz I gotta tell ya... I'd probably be stalking him if he lived here in L.A. God knows if Levi was ever in town long enough for the two of us to hang out, he might never get away from me. :)

Anyway, it was a dang good night. And for those who haven't yet discovered what amazing singer-songwriters these two openly gay hotties create, make sure you check out their MySpace pages (links above).

Hollywood Ken


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