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Zack Condon of Beirut
Matthew Irwin

Hometown Gig

Zack Condon "knows too many people" at Warehouse 21

October 7, 2011, 1:00 am
By SFR Staff
Well, I learned my lesson for posting blogs on sfreporter.com: write the blog in Word or TextEdit first, then transfer it to the website; otherwise, risk timing out and losing everything I just wrote about, say, Beirut's show, last night, at Warehouse 21.

Here's the short list of ideas/topics from that lost entry:
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Zack Condon—leader of the Balkan-infused indie act based out of Brooklyn—made plenty of overtures to his hometown of Santa Fe, as well as the venue, a youth arts center that he's credited in magazines such as Cowbell as a place he got started. "I know too many people in the crowd, so I'm going to keep staring into the white lights," Condon said.

Beirut donated the $30 to $40 door charge to the center. “I remember playing in a shack in the back,” Condon told the Warehouse 21 crowd. “Now, it’s a high school. The facilities look great,” Condon said.

 
Famously anxious at the outset of a gig, Condon fiddled with his hair when he wasn’t singing or playing an instrument (ukulele or trumpet). He has had a mixed relationship with Santa Fe, which he told NPR World Café host David Dye stems from his struggle for identity in a region split between tourism and native culture.

After singing his hymn to Santa Fe, aptly named “Santa Fe,” Condon apologized for garbling a few of the lyrics. The altitude, he said, was causing him to forget a number of lyrics that evening.

The six-piece outfit played a number of melancholy tracks off its latest album, Riptide, including “A Candle’s Fire,” “Goshen” and the title track, as well as a few more danceable instrumental numbers. The band also played "Postcards from Italy," which Condon said he wrote in Santa Fe.

Despite a few bored dads in the back of the all-ages venue, the performance delighted the majority in attendance, including myself, for whom Condon’s appearance had considerably less meaning. I could nonetheless feel the significance of the event.

“There’s too much to say,” Condon said. “So I’ll just say, ‘Thank you.'”

Beirut plays a second Santa Fe gig, tonight, at the Santa Fe Community Convention Center, 201 W. Marcy St. Tickets are still available for $25. 988-1234.

 

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