The Hudson Square Music & Wine Festival is in full swing. It’s free every summer Tuesday and takes place in the lot behind City Winery. I missed the first show last week but I was determined to see Bhi Bhiman as a headliner and with a full band.
The rain started falling at 5:15pm just as predicted. I was able to get a Farmer’s Bowl (lots of veggies with two corn and potato pockets) just before the heavy rain started. Very good. During the break I got a hot dog, which was also very good. By the time I was under one of the four tents the opener, Heather Maloney was on stage. She had a small crowd but it grew despite the rain. By the time she finished, the rain had passed by. Maloney has a sweet pleasant voice and is a very good singer. She sang Joni Mitchell’s “Woodstock,” a video of which had appeared in the New York Times and Graham Nash commented favorably upon. The video was Maloney and others singing the song. She ended a cappella with her full clear voice washing away the last of the rain.
rtb and I have seen Bhi Bhiman several times as an opener and solo artist with just an acoustic guitar. I think we were both excited to see him as a headliner and with a full band. His sound folk, soul, and R&B and with his new album some of his songs are more political but there is still enough of the personal. Mostly songs about heartache and moving on.
The band was keyboards, drums, and electric bass – I didn’t get a chance to write down their names. Bhiman played electric guitar with the band and acoustic when he did a solo set. The band filled out the familiar songs and never overpowered the solo Bhiman that we were used to. Besides being an excellent songwriter, Bhiman plays a mean guitar. It was nice to hear him show off on the electric. It was also nice to hear just him and the acoustic for a few songs.
He ended the night with two favorites – “Guttersnipe” and Dire Straits’ “Walk of Life.”
By Carene Lydia Lopez