Matt Van Gasbeck
Photo: Matt Van Gasbeck, bartender, graphic designer, singer/songwriter. Placed fifth in the OnTap hottest bartender contest, if you are into that sort of thing.

Last Saturday night Fireflies hosted a singer/songwriter showcase. Five pairs of songwriters played three songs (guitars only), alternating between the two musicians. The audience was treated not only to the songs, but to the sight of fellow musicians digging another songwriter’s music.

Matt Van Gasbeck, one of the bartenders at Fireflies, and ex-member of My American Heart, introduced himself à la Woody Allen saying he doubted he’d be able to get through his set without major mistakes, then scatted and riffed three lightly ironic, but compelling songs.

Michael Yugo
Photo: Michael Yugo (Web site)

Michael Yugo and Tim Parks
Photo: Michael Yugo and Tim Parks (My Space)

Tim Parks arranged the line-up of musicians, many of whom were his close friends. The evening was a reunion for several of the musicians.

Mike Conrad
Photo: Mike Conrad (MySpace)

Joe Shade
Photo: Joe Shade (MySpace)

Ex-punk band member Joe Shade was a favorite of mine that evening. Check out his MySpace.

Mike Conrad and Joe Shade
Photo: Mike Conrad and Joe Shade

I wasn’t able to get a (miserably lit) photo of everyone. Not by choice, pizza needed eating and cocktails needed drinking. Not pictured but also on the line-up:
Rene Moffatt
Jeff Stapleton (he of the 12-string freaky fingerpicking)
Dave Ihmels
Ed McGuire

Celeste Starchild
Photo: Celeste Starchild (Web site, MySpace)

Celeste Starchild brought out the guitar her father left her for this special night. It’s the guitar she composes on and which rarely leaves her house.

Fireflies has a very intimate setting, it’s just your local bar (plus pizza and sandwiches and such) and live music. Worth a visit if you love music and want a low-key venue.

Postscript: I ran into one of the singer/songwriters this evening who confirmed that the musicians had felt very comfortable playing with old friends and enjoying the music of singers they had just met that evening. S/he also hinted that Tim might organize another songwriter evening, so stay tuned.