LIVE: Anders Osborne @ Putnam’s Den, 5/31/13 (Take Two)

June 10th, 2013, 4:00 pm by Greg

Anders Osborne  @ The Putnam Den (photo by Kirsten Ferguson)

Review by J Hunter
Photographs by Kirsten Ferguson

The calendar hadn’t flipped to June yet, and the Solstice was still weeks away. Nevertheless, the tank tops, jogging shorts and Hawaiian shirts that dotted the nighttime landscape made one thing clear: Summer’s here, and the time is right for drinking in the street… or, at least, in the open-air bars across from me as I made my way up Putnam Street. But rather than drawing me in, the cover bands assaulting the night with mediocre takes on “Don’t Stop Believing” and “Burning for You” just made me walk faster, because my mission involved real, original music from one of New Orleans’ classic musical mongrels!

Anders Osborne may have been born in Uddevalla, Sweden, but he may as well have been born in the Crescent City. He’s a regular at JazzFest, which may be where most of the packed house at Putnam’s Den saw him for the first time. Then again, that first time could have happened anywhere, since Osborne’s been your basic road dog since his first record came out in 1989. And he hasn’t slowed down, either: Aside from touring his own music, he’s part of the Voice of the Wetlands All-Stars, and he’s one of the raft of NOLA legends who appear on Galactic’s eclectic mash-up disc Ya-Ka-May. If you didn’t know what Osborne looked like, he could have passed for one of the customers as he walked into Putnam’s in black-t-shirt and jeans.

Mind you, it wasn’t the grey in his now-relatively-trimmed beard that betrayed how many miles Osborne has on his odometer. After tuning up, Osborne sheepishly announced that he’d left his reading glasses back at the hotel, and without them, he couldn’t read the lyrics on the iPad taped to the music stand in front of his chair. If an audience member hadn’t lent Osborne his reading glasses, we might still be staring at each other. Instead, Osborne dove into the blues of “I’ve Been Away Too Long,” and the show was on the road.

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LIVE: Anders Osborne @ Putnam Den, 5/31/13

June 5th, 2013, 4:00 pm by Greg
Anders Osborne

Anders Osborne

Review & photographs by Dan Hogan

What a deal, folks! Anders Osborne in Saratoga for $15! Who could refuse such a deal? Not me, so I contacted my bud, Bernie and we made plans to go to this show. We began our evening with a late breakfast at the Gateway Diner on Central Avenue in Albany. The service was hyper and efficient, the coffee was pretty darn good and the food was okay – better than cooking.

Heading up the Northway, we soon arrived in downtown Saratoga and found a place to park. Saratoga was hopping, but I was worried when we parked and got out of the car only to hear a cover band playing “Margaritaville.” Bad omen, I thought, but it was nice to see so many young people out on a Friday night, drinking, dancing and having fun, misguided though they may be.

We found the Putnam Den – it was set back from the street – and went in to find out we were about the ninth and tenth patrons of the night. I asked the doorman “Where are the peeps?” and he said it was early. Early allowed us to walk up to a table right in front of the stage and take our seats. The Den is a very good venue. It has a large stage with professional light and sound, ready to hold a couple hundred rabid fans. They just weren’t there yet. The long bar goes along the far side of the place, and like some of those bars in NYC about 20 years, they feature patrons’ bras hanging above the bar. I wanted to donate my bra, but it was early, and I am shy and, well, I don’t have one, so I kinda felt left out and such.

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