Concert Gallery Heartstrings Review

PHOTOS: Elephant Revival at Bowery Ballroom

On Thursday, November 5, 2015, Elephant Revival took the Bowery Ballroom stage. It was just about 10:30 PM, and Nora Jane Struthers and Parsonsfield had just closed out their rousing supporting sets, corralling the crowd for the 5-piece Colorado-bred clan waiting just beyond the backstage door.

Prior to entering the fan-and-artist-favorite NYC venue, I couldn’t help but notice not only what must have been Elephant Revival’s large tour bus, but a shorter and more modest bus (painted white and of the school/summer camp-kind) situated just beside it. It attracted me. Most obviously because its door was wide open and a sign fronted it with “FREE TEA” written on it, but more profoundly for the family living inside. In addition to “FREE TEA,” it produced an energy that had HOME written all over it. Space was tight, and every inch was accounted for, decorated, loved and occupied. It was inviting and so were those inside it — one of which was Bridget Law, Elephant Revival’s fiddle player. I immediately tapped Bridget on the shoulder and asked her what the deal was with this ethereal vehicle parked in front of me. She said they were long-time friends who created their traveling tea agency around the same time that Elephant Revival formed, and its existence holds near and dear to her heart. I followed by asking if they accompany them on their tour travels, and she said they don’t, and that they are on their own tour, in a continuous circle around the country. She then hurried inside the venue to get ready to take the stage.

For those who don’t know, Elephant Revival is Bridget Law, Bonnie Paine, Daniel Rodriguez, Charlie Rose and Dango Rose. I find their music to be pure, unprocessed, free-spoken and undisguised representations of themselves. The attention and care they invest into each and every note, strum and pick is the same they invest into each and every day, and the world around them. Their appreciation and respect for mother nature, and to experience how such a connection emerges in their sound, is contagious and inspiring. Time seemed to wash away that night as the band was on stage. Simultaneously, one song always seems a prelude to the next, and an afterword to the one which came before.

Photo Credit: Lauren Jahoda


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