Ian Moore, Satellite Lounge, October 23, 1998
I first saw Ian Moore about two years ago at the now defunct Rockefellers. At thattime, I hadn't heard a thing about him. Being new to TX, I didn't know much aboutthe Austin music scene and the legends of artists that have come out of Austin andsurrounding areas. Ian Moore was my first introduction to that. His show backthen was an all out rock/blues show. I was impressed with his soulful voice (forsuch a young, white man) and for his using of supplemental musicians, horns, etc. His music had a certain spiritual quality and he had a few songs that had away of staying with you, like Muddy Jesus ("Jesus crossed the Rio Grande").
So, it had been a long time coming for me to get my second chance at Ian Moore. He played the Satellite Lounge on Friday night, and I was no where near preparedfor what I received. Expecting another testosterone induced blues show, I wassurprised yet inspired by his new material. Ian Moore took the stage, first sportinga new, shorter hair style than his previously long tresses. Looking more like RickSpringfield than Fabio, he appeared very cute and more youthful. However, his newmaterial displayed a new maturity. Still exhibiting the rich vocals of the past, butnow with more depth and feeling, Moore opened with "Paris, TX" a melodic ballad. He proceeded to display his talents with an eclectic mix of mature themes, avariety of instruments (mandolin, sitar, violin), and some accomplished musicianship inbass player and percussionist. He had a very relaxed air about him and was skillfulwith his conversation with the crowd, making you feel more like you were chatting insomeone's living room instead of standing in a crowd of 400 people. He revealedpersonal observations with "Closer", saying he wrote it about the times he stolehis dad's car to drive to Mexico when he was 15 and his dis to his homeopathic girlfriendand hippie friends in "Penny Royal Tea", an almost dance track. There wererevelations about life on the road, peppered with his share of breakup songs. Myfavorite part of the show was when an interesting story was told in relation to the song"Us/Them" ("Shining, you're one of the beautiful people"). It isabout an Austin musician that got pretty full of himself with success, broke up with hisgirlfriend to fool around on the road, and then the girlfriend got to be an even biggerstar. The poignant part of the story was when Ian revealed that the musicianeventually killed himself when his own fame began to fade. He talked of hisbeing influenced by Ella Fitzgerald and played a jazzy number, and wasn't shy aboutcovering some of his other idols like Jimmy Cliff with "Many Rivers to Cross"and a rousing rendition of Bob Dylan's "You're a Big Girl Now" with opening actTerrie Hendricks.
Ian explained that for the past couple of years he had been doing some recording andhis former label, Capital, just wasn't in to what he was doing. He has an unreleasedCD that he is hopeful will be released someday. He decided to self-release the current CD IanMoore's Got the Green Grass which contains the majority of the material from thisshow. This was a brilliant performance in which the artist puts himself out there tohis audience and reveals truths about himself, his friends, and life in general that makesone feel better about themselves just by being there. I was so inspired that Ihurried down to Cactus Music on Saturday afternoon to catch more of Ian up close andpersonal. I was treated to several of the songs from the previous night in anacoustic format, with a slightly sleepy eyed Ian giving out more personal introspectionson his music. Again for "Us/Them", he referred to the girl who made itbig, but told how Hollywood really messed him up with all its superficiality. Hejoked that he thought about naming the song "Beautiful People", but that he andMarilyn (Manson) had been sitting around in Hollywood one day, Marilyn spit blood on him,and he had to change the name of the song. He also talked about"Airplane", in which he said he got the idea for that song when he had listenedto another musician proposition a stripper, how evil the conversation had been, and how hethought the girl must have wanted to just disappear.
Ian Moore has taken his obvious talent to another level. Finding a way to relatepersonally to every member of an audience is a unique gift. It seems like he hasfound a comfortable place for himself and his music in the crazy music industry.
On That Note, I'm outta here......
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