LIVE: Red Molly @ Troy Savings Bank Music Hall, 5/16/14

May 21st, 2014, 4:00 pm by Greg


Review and photographs by Tim Mack

There is no justice.

If you’re the sort of music fan who reads Nippertown, you know this already. Talent, charisma and hard work don’t guarantee success, and plenty of artists lacking in those departments make the big-time through blind luck and clever management (and possibly questionable consumer taste).

Which brings us to Red Molly.

If you caught the Americana/bluegrass trio in their return to the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall last Friday night, you probably felt lucky to see such an outsized talent in a comparatively modest venue. Bassist Laurie MacAllister noted it was likely the biggest indoor audience the band had ever played for. And somehow that didn’t seem right. Not that anyone was complaining, because the Hall’s famous acoustics seemed perfectly suited to these three pure voices.

MacAllister, Abbie Gardner (dobro) and Molly Venter (guitar) play music with a good ol’ country feel and a bigger sound than you’d expect from an easy-going trio. (Concert note: It’s always a good sign when the ushers are raving about the sound check while they lead you to your seat.) The first set saw a sampling of material off their 2011 studio release, Light in the Sky, as well as songs from their various solo records and the soon-to-be-released The Red Album, arriving officially next week (though copies arrived in Troy just in time for the show). Every song was a crowd-pleaser, but two covers were stand-outs: Simon and Garfunkel’s “Homeward Bound” and “1952 Vincent Black Lightning,” Richard Thompson’s classic motorcycle ballad starring a tragic heroine named… Red Molly.

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LIVE: Red Molly @ Crandall Library, 4/22/10

April 27th, 2010, 4:04 pm by Greg

Red Molly

Saving the best for last, Red Molly closed out the Crandall Library’s spring Folklife Concert Series to a SRO crowd Thursday night. Red Molly members Laura MacAllister (on guitar and banjo), Abbie Gardner (dobro) and Carolann Solebello (guitar) opened the show with the rollicking Gillian Welch murder ballad, “Don’t You Call My Name,” which had the audience smiling, dancing and grooving in the their seats.

There was no need for any librarians to hush this rapt audience as the three-part harmonies awed the crowd. Songs would come to an end as whispers of “Oh, yeah” and approving moans could be heard before the applause would rise. Between songs, the proud Adirondack audience members would occasionally shout out facts of the area to the band members. Straight-faced, MacAllister quipped, “Really, this is the Adirondacks? I just love your chairs!”

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Five Firsts: Abbie Gardner of Red Molly

March 2nd, 2010, 12:54 pm by Greg

Red Molly

Red Molly

NAME: Abbie Gardner

1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … The California Raisins

2. THE FIRST CONCERT THAT I EVER SAW WAS … My dad, playing with the Galvanized Jazz Band (dixieland)

3. THE FIRST MUSICAL INSTRUMENT I EVER OWNED OR PLAYED WAS … violin, though I quickly switched to flute.

4. THE FIRST SONG THAT I EVER PERFORMED IN PUBLIC WAS … probably a classical flute piece at my first recital, though I don’t remember which one. (It was 4th grade.)

5. THE FIRST BAND I WAS EVER IN WAS … The Bluefield Elementary School Band. The first modern band I was in was Silent Q, a garage rock band, playing bass and singing backup. We did Rush, Yes, Pink Floyd and Genesis covers.

Abbie Gardner and her bandmates in Red Molly take to the stage at Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs for two shows (7 & 9:30pm) on Friday in support of their brand new album, “James.”

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