Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Xanna Don't and 'Do Does Atlanta

Southern Exposure Gay Musicians Series is continuing at Blake's on the Park, here in Atlanta. It began a number of weeks ago, and appears to be a regular feature for Thursday nights at Blake's, as there is a schedule of performers into the end of October. I don't generally attend "gay music nights" at bars. Nothing against them, it's just not my "scene". However, a couple of weeks ago, a fabulous woman who I met at the Atlanta Film Festival kept me informed of her appearance there, and I was intrigued. Although I am far from qualified to formally comment upon live music in a club setting, I feel the need to get this girl OUT THERE more!!

Miss Xanna Don't takes the stage with a pitch black, swirling beehive of a 'do that defies description, which magnificently offsets her porcelain skin, highlighted by ruby red lips. In short, she has perfectly coiffed herself so all focus is on her face. (I can't even remember what she was wearing, except for production pictures provided by Southern Exposure's MySpace site.) The first couple of moments of a performance tends to set the stage (so to speak) for me. I need to TRUST that the performer trusts what they are bout to do, or I can become guarded. Miss Don't's stage manner was charming and thoroughly professional and in control of the house. Phew!! I knew right then, that this was going to be at least good enough to face her afterward. And then...

She sang! I'm not an aficionado of "punk-C&W-fusion" or whatever style one might try to label Miss Don't, but it was as if a warmer and hipper version of kd lang was in the house. Her music (which you can preview at her MySpace page) felt to be a jazzier (and therefore more accessible to ME) twist on Country & Western. She seamlessly performed a mix of covers and original songs. Here is where my club reporting inexperience is glaringly obvious, as I can only note in writing a couple of titles. Her "Midnight Blue" (an original) was just lovely, as was her cover of "A Cowboy's Work is Never Done" a campy hoot! Miss Don't was accompanied by a pair of guitarists. The lead (pictured on the right) was quite able, and their "support" WILL catch up with some more performances.
The set was about an hour long and followed by the opportunity to buy her disc (which I DID!). It was also an opportunity for me to thank her for her performance, which I was truly grateful for. She REALLY delivered, and I was NOT in that embarrassing situation of "finding something good to say" after a friend's performance! She is on the schedule to appear again at Blake's, but not until October... Unless she can be convinced to appear EARLIER?!

Maxxxxx says
re MISS XANNA DON'T: "Dooby dooby dooo-ooo!"

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