All but invisible

Friday, October 10, 2003

  • Danny Michel at the Brass Taps

    Danny Michel at the Brass Taps

Written by Allison Brown (cannon.ca staff)

I will never forget the first time I heard Danny Michel’s tantalizing music dancing on the breeze in the warm September air. It was Orientation Week 2001 and I, fresh-faced and foreign to the Guelph music scene, was immediately drawn in by his performance of the carefully crafted “In the Belly of a Whale”.

Since that moment I have silently yearned for another opportunity to see him live and, though it was a long time coming, Wednesday night’s performance was worth every minute of waiting.

  • for more pictures of Danny's show, click here

Matthew Barber kicked off the evening with a solid eight-song set. Cradling his guitar like a love-sick father, the lanky crooner serenaded the crowd with songs about girls and birds with a confidence that betrayed the stark aura of the dimly lit stage. His self-assured nonchalance was admirable and even the simplest songs were undeniably well written. Without a doubt the standout tune of his set was a piece titled “Timeless” which worked around the quaint line "Some people think it's old-fashioned to write songs on guitars; but I think it's okay."

By the time Michel and his band took the stage a sizeable crowd had gathered to honour him with their unwavering attention. A commanding presence, the minute musical wonder has a unique ability to play the role of actor, comedian, storyteller and musician all at once, weaving musical tales that pull you in and never let go. Opening with the eerie and quirky “Invisible Man”, Michel instantly set the stage for a night of solid entertainment. Infusing his distinctive brand of folky pop-rock with a contagious sense of fun, Danny managed to win over even the hardest audience members with only a few chords and a mischievous grin. Aside from playing a thorough run-through of his latest album, Michel pulled out a smattering of old favourites as well as a couple of cover songs. Paying tribute to Johnny Cash and killer artic hares, the band never let up for a second. Considered a local treasure by many, Danny continues to build a reputation of strong live shows and awe-inspiring musicianship. How could we possibly expect anything less?

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