The Minivans at the Main Street Public House

After a February with no live music to speak of (partly because it was a slow month music-wise, and partly because I’ve haven’t had the time to go to concerts), I was more than happy to get back into the swing of things last Friday night — both literally and figuratively. I can’t think of a better band to have done so with than The Minivans, or at a better place than the Main Street Public House in Philmont, NY.

Before the start of the show the crowd was full of anxious dancers. Even non-dancers become dancers at the pub, because it has a spirit about it that makes you drop all sense of self-consciousness. The Minivans’ music doesn’t hurt either… It takes a strong person to resist dancing to the power of their music. Since that’s the case, why would you even want to be strong?! There’s no room for self-consciousness in the world, especially when fun is to be had. In order to fully experience the joy of a Minivans show you must be prepared to set aside all outside fears and limitations. The pub is a perfect and safe place to do just that, for the characters that congregate there are non-judgmental. (Um, and many times have frequently had multiple drinks.)

The Minivans played a great set of music, starting out with a two-step. Double stops on fiddle by Lukas Schwartz led the tune, with killer bass playing courtesy of Jim Krewson, and guitar and drums (by Seth Travins and Rick Leab, respectively) rounding out the mix. Pete Adams was playing pedal steel guitar and had some sweet solos, completing the sound as only pedal steel can. Throughout the night the band played various styles of music, a nice mix of cheerful songs, sad ballads, slow songs, swing tunes, and a scattering of waltzes varying in tempo. Seth and Kiki Dufault sang together on a number of duets, their vocals intertwining with a hearty country soulfulness. Jim sang a bunch of songs as well, his vocals containing a lonesomeness whether in duet with Kiki’s or solo. Melissa Dufault (Kiki’s sister) also sang a bunch of songs, and her vocals are a little more bluesy so they lent themselves well to the jazzy swing tunes. Towards the end of the night each of the songs blended into the next, one long medley of music with barely a pause between songs. No matter what The Minivans play, two things are certain: one, it’ll sound great; and two, you’ll most likely want to dance. It’s hard to define The Minivans, except to say that they’re good.

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