by Pat Ferris
Carolyn Wonderland, HotBands.com's first featured artist, stopped in Seattle while on tour of the West Coast before heading to Europe.
Currently from Austin Texas (formerly from Houston), Carolyn's dynamic vocals, guitar prowess and stage presence gets her on my list of the top 5 performers I've seen. Her list of awards include:
With credentials like these, it was a no-brainer that the Pacific Northwest was going to love Carolyn! My cudos were that I got to spend the past week with them while they were in town, and hang with them on and off stage. This gave me the opportunity to introduce them to several key people in the Seattle music arena as well as with some local event coordinators.
Arriving late Tuesday from playing the previous day at The Top Hat in Missoula Montana, we tipped a few beers at The Blue Moon Tavern...a local landmark, and the oldest pub in Seattle. Hitting it off right away with the bartender, Carolyn and her band were invited back for an open mic the following nite, and (of course) blew everybody away with a short three-song set before we headed down to Larry's Greenfront Cafe' in Seattle's Pioneer Square for another jam, and another impressed crowd!
Thursday at Larry's was her first full-fledged performance in Seattle. The nite started a little slow, but there was a steady stream of people the entire nite, and by the end of the evening, the house was rockin. An enthusiastic crowd stayed till the end, buying Carolyn's CD's and getting autographs.
Friday, I hooked up with my friends Kaya and John Stenzler (from The Shamaniac's), and brought Carolyn's band into the coolest and friendliest group of musician's in Seattle. Home made chicken soup and other fine foods were accompanied by live acoustic music going into the late evening. Eventually, we all went bar-hopping to see some other bands and ended up partying till nearly 4am.
Separated by 14 miles of water and a short ferry ride across Puget Sound from Seattle, Saturday's show was at The Manette Saloon in Bremerton (pronounced: muh-net) , and was filmed live by Fog City Productions ( www.audiovideomix.com ) for use in an upcoming show on Rising Stars. The performance started off with a few problems...during set up, Carolyn attacked a camera operators hand with her nose as he was pointing at something, which sent her to the ladies room for a few minutes till the bleeding stopped. Then, a power surge left half of the sound board dead. The opening act, Michael Williams (also from Houston and now living in Seattle), struggled through half a set before the sound problems were re-routed and fixed. In spite of the problems, the Manette was PACKED, the crowd loved both of them, AND Jason got some great footage for the video.
Sundays show was at The Rainbow, which is located next door to The Blue Moon, and is one of the top live clubs in Seattle. We had a good crowd of people, and a gracious introduction by Vivian McPeak from The Seattle Hemp-Fest (www.seattlehempfest.com). Michael Williams again opened the show and did a searing performance which more than warmed up the audience for Carolyn and her band. Carolyn went on to deliver two blistering sets and played till closing, packing up and heading off to her next destination of Eugene OR. If you have the opportunity to see this band, I promise it will be an evening you will enjoy!
This weeks' performances are:
Complete information can be found at her official website at http://www.carolynwonderland.com