McKeage's 2-12-05
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"Music is the art of the that can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most magnificent and delightful presents God has given us."     
                                                                                                                            Martin Luther


First, I just want to say thanks to Andy B of...

...for the photos and video clips that comprise this page (wouldn't you know we left our own camera in the car!)  And, indeed, I'm grateful for his sharing them as Brian's performance at the West Milford, NJ venue...

...was definitely worth commemorating!  As a result, here's a brief recap of this fantastic show...


Brian Fitzpatrick


McKeage's Tavern
West Milford, NJ


Starting off the set alone on acoustic guitar, Brian shared one of his newer (and as yet unreleased) songs, "Feelin' Alright Today"...

...after which he switched gears a bit to present the familiar "murder song", "Cross That Line"...joined by newcomer Matty Z on mandolin (yeah, I know the photo below shows Matty on guitar instead!&*^*!)...




  "I spend my time
      playing in these
      backstreet bars...

    While you're out
        with him,
        laughing under

     But one of 
         these days..."




Next came a track from Brian's latest album, Further Down The Line.  A simple and sweet story of a musician's unglamorous life on the road, "Stuck In Boston" likewise featured Matty on mandolin -- and included the surprise of a complex and interesting solo interlude on that instrument...




        "Tonight I'm
             stuck in 

           And you're
             down that
             GA line..."





After this Brian shared the album's title track, a song that debuted in early 2002, and still remains a welcome addition to any set in which it's featured.   Of course, there are the occasional cynical types who can find the cloud surrounding even the brightest silver lining -- or perhaps who merely enjoy creating clouds themselves.  Specifically, I'm referencing a late night DJ for WDHA's "Homegrown Spotlight", who Brian noted recently played this song as part of his show -- then proceeded to mercilessly trash it.   Of course, the fact he completed misquoted one of the very lines he was trashing probably tells you all you need to know about his level of "expertise"...



   "I'll take you down, 
         so nice and slow...

     Silk, satin and indigo,
          and candlelight...

      Everything's alright...

      I'll cast you into 

      Beyond love's 
          great divide...

       I'm wide awake
           in the daylight...

       Is it an accident
           of time

       That finds us here,
           a little further
           down the line."



Returning to another song from his prior disc, State of Grace, Brian was again joined by Matty, this time on guitar, for the reflective "Thinking", a song written in memory of a good friend...



     "I found myself

       And wondering
           what went 


        On that misty

         When I found
             out you
             were gone..."


Next came one of my faves from the current release, a song entitled "Far From Thee".  And, thanks once more to Andy B, you can hear a bit of this for yourself by checking out the brief video clips below. (To check out more songs from Further Down The Line, you can click on the album cover to visit, where it's currently being sold.)




"Far From Thee" Clip 1


"Far From Thee" Clip 2


                  (NOTE: Even with high speed
                   internet, these clips may take 
                   a minute to please be 


As the set began to wind down, yet another selection from FDTL followed (and, yes, another of my faves), "Madonna In Rags".  And, once again, this included some fantastic guitar work by Matty Z...




     "Madonna in rags
         at the edge of
         my gate...


        In the cold 
           morning light,

        In the darkness
            she waits...








    She's got 
        half of 
        her bus fare,


    And waiting 
        on fate..."




Brian then announced that the next song was one he wasn't sure he'd ever played live before (in fact, he'd done so just once...having been in attendance for the haunting 2001 performance at NYC's Bitter End, it was a treat I couldn't forget!).  In any case, everyone present on this February evening will surely remember that he shared the beautiful "Such As I"...



       "In the shadow
          of the church-

        Right next to
           the county jail...


         The doors of

          Right next to
            the gates
            of hell..."



Finally, joined by Matty on mandolin once more, Brian closed out the set with a cover another artist featured prominently here on, Michael McDermott -- in fact, Michael's earliest hit, "A Wall I Must Climb".  And, I'm sure Michael would himself would have very much enjoyed Brian and Matty's admirable performance of this song...




   "The hangman,
          he's in the 

      And, he's looking
          for something
          to do...

       'til he finds who
          won the battle

        Of the evil 
            and the true..."




In fact, the only thing NOT to be enjoyed by this entire night of music was that it all ended too soon!  

That said, I (like everyone else in attendance, I expect) look forward to another Brian Fitzpatrick show in the very near future.

In the meantime...

...thanks much, Brian (and Matty)!

And, of course...

See you next time!!!




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