My friend Kelly was visiting from San Francisco last year and we went to see her friend’s band, The Blacks, play at Pianos. She told me he played tamborine in the band. "That’s it?" I asked skeptically. She replied, "He really gets into it."
That was kind of an understatement. Joel Gion is cool and all, but JDK Black takes tambourine playing to a new, intense level. He’s a dynamo. The caption I wrote on Flickr for the above photo: "It was that point in the show where the tambourine player became ‘pure energy.’"
The Blacks are back at Pianos, and have been since Saturday, and are upping the tambourine factor just a little. Dubbed "The Tambourine Experiment," they’ll be distributing 100 tambourines to the audience, though I doubt the combined crowd’s involvement will be able to eclipse JDK intensity… though it will be fun to try.
Musically, The Blacks are in that blues/garage/punk school — think The White Stripes, Flat Duo Jets, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs — and are certainly good at it, but it’s the tambourine you really remember. And tonight’s show sure sounds unforgettable.
According to the Pianos website, The Blacks take the stage at 11:30, though the venue is notorious for running late (sometimes very late). If you can’t make it tonight, The Blacks play Union Pool on Wednesday (5/14) but it’s not a 100 Tambourine show. But, really, the one they have is plenty impressive on his own.