Mon · August 6, 2018
Doors: 6:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pmThe Tin Pan
$35 adv / $40 door
This event is all ages
Seating: We assign seats in order of when you purchase your tickets. All reservations are subject to a food and drink minimum of $13 per guest. We reserve the right to seat parties together at the same table in the event of a busy show.
Box Office: The Tin Pan charges lower fees for box office versus online sales. Our box office is open Mon-Sat 12PM-5PM. Please visit us during those hours or call 804-447-8189.https://www.tinpanrva.com/event/1670010/
“Start Livinʼ is basically a love album,” says Frankenreiter, who co-produced the record alongside Matt Grundy and Adam Ableman. “Most of the songs are about my wife and our two boys, and the life that weʼve built together in Hawaii.” Thanks to Frankenreiterʼs infectious warmth and finely honed pop sensibilities, each of those songs has the singular effect of drawing the listener into that bright and breezy world for a blissed-out moment.
Essential to the recordʼs playful feel is Frankenreiterʼs inspired use of instrumentation. “This albumʼs completely unlike anything Iʼve ever done before, in that we skipped the basics and went for a whole lot of different instruments,” he says. “We never brought in a drum set—instead thereʼs handclapping for percussion, or the two of us banging on pots and pans. We were using everything from bells to singing bowls to Zippo lighters; at one point we put some beans and salts in a can and shook it around.” Grundy played a key role in the wildly varied sounds on Start Livinʼ, according to Frankenreiter. “Matt was playing ukulele and lap steel guitar and banjo—heʼd grab an instrument and weʼd do a take live and just build the track up from that. It was a real fun vibe.”
Despite that kitchen-sink approach, Start Livinʼ never comes off as cluttered. Each of the songs shines with a crisp, clean sound perfectly suited to the albumʼs sunny spirit: “You” achieves a hypnotic dreaminess by layering lap steel over beautifully crooned harmonies and a twinkling acoustic riff; “I Can Lose” matches its island-breezy guitars with shimmering mandolin; and a gracefully plucked banjo backs up Frankenreiterʼs hushed, heart-on-sleeve lyrics on the quietly epic “Together Forever.” On “Shine,” meanwhile, ocean-wave-like effects merge with a swaying melody and smitten lyrics (“You and I, girl, are like a sun and moon/Lately youʼve been in orbit in my head like a good summer tune”).
While love songs serve as the albumʼs centerpiece, Frankenreiter also explores non- romantic love throughout Start Livinʼ. The gloriously ragtag “Same Lullaby,” for instance, makes a sweetly hopeful plea for world peace. “I wrote that song a little while after the tsunami in Japan, thinking how lucky I was to have a family and be alive,” Frankenreiter recalls. “The line that goes ʻI believe the world could be fine if we could all sing the same lullabyʼ—thatʼs me hoping we could all just get together and be on the same wavelength even for just one moment.” On the irresistibly toe-tapping “Just Love,” Frankenreiter turns his focus to his two sons, Ozzy and Hendrix. “Sometimes my kidsʼll get scared of things in the dark—you know, the monster under the bed,” he says. “So that songʼs me telling them, ʻInstead of thinking thereʼs something bad there, think of it as just love creeping in. Embrace it. Talk to it. ʼ”
Elsewhere on Start Livinʼ, Frankenreiter hones in on more heavy-handed matters. Undoubtedly the albumʼs most somber moment, “A.I.” pays tearful tribute to Frankenreiterʼs friend Andy Irons (a professional surfer who passed away in November 2010). “Iʼd never been that close to someone who passed away before. The songʼs about me telling Andy that I just wish I could see him one more time,” says Frankenreiter of “A.I.,” which pairs pained lyrics (“Help me get through another day away from you”) with gentle guitar melodies and shushing percussion. Frankenreiter also says goodbye to a friend on “West Coast Fool,” but this time itʼs a wistful takedown of “a Southern man with big olʼ Southern plans.” A high-minded twist on the typical kiss- off track, “West Coast Fool” pulls off the unlikely feat of seamlessly blending banjo twang with the soothing hum of a Tibetan singing bowl.
For Frankenreiter, the essence of Start Livinʼ is most fully captured in its album-opening title track. Accented by handclaps and a stick-in-your-head harmonies, “Start Livinʼ” is a feel-good, uptempo call to “celebrate tonight.” “To me the most beautiful thing about this record is it really reflects who I am today,” says Frankenreiter. “Start Livinʼ means stop worrying about where youʼve been, where youʼre going—just start embracing what you have around you. Start loving what you have right now.”
"A couple of friends invited me over to share some songs at their apartment, and that was the first time I'd ever really listened to Americana music or folk or country or whatever you want to call it," remembers Luning. "They showed me John Prine, and it just resonated with me so much. I was like, 'Oh my god, this is what I have to do with my life.' I just figured it out in that moment."
Luning dropped out of school almost immediately, moved back to his native California, and devoted himself to songwriting and performing. He worked his way up through open mics to large festival performances, piecing together a band to flesh out his songs along the way and hitting the road to tour with a fierce determination. His self-released debut album, 'Just Drop On By,' garnered acclaim from both critics and fellow musicians alike, with country megastar Keith Urban hailing Luning's "staunch originality." Songs from the album landed numerous film and TV placements, most recently on NBC's 'Grimm,' and Luning's reputation for exhilarating live performances earned him dates with luminaries like Jackie Greene, Dave and Phil Alvin, and Elvin Bishop, along with a slew of festival performances up and down the West Coast.
If 'Just Drop On by' announced the arrival of a promising new talent, 'Restless' delivers on that potential and then some. Recorded under the guidance of engineer/producer Karl Derfler (Tom Waits, Dave Matthews) and with Luning's longtime live bandmates—Ben Dubin (bass & harmonica), Linden Reed (drums), and Dave Sampson (guitar & mandolin)—the album marks a major step forward, both sonically and emotionally.
"With the first record, I produced and engineered everything myself," explains Luning. "I'd never worked with an outside producer before, so it was nerve-racking going into the studio with Karl for the first time, but it was just a perfect fit. It was like he knew what I wanted in my music before I even did, and he could push my performances where they needed to go and really take my music to another level."
Luning and his band set up shop at the stunning Panoramic Studios in Stinson, California, crafting a darker, grittier vibe for the music and exploring a wider palette than ever before. While many of Luning's songs are inspired by the lives and stories of the men and women he's grown up with in California or met on the road, the lyrics are all filtered through his own unique perspective and reflect his remarkable personal journey. Perhaps no track fits that bill more directly than "Driftin,'" an infectious road warrior's anthem that find's Luning singing, "I wanna keep on drifting like a rambling man."
"I had so much fun on tour going from place to place and playing to new people all the time and I got into the rhythm of it all, so when it ended and we came home I wasn't ready to stop," he explains. "We pulled into Ben's house to unload our gear and I said, 'Ben, we're packing up and we're gonna go somewhere tomorrow right? We're gonna keep on going right?'"
Much of the album is uptempo and exuberant—"Almost Sounds Like Laughing" is a foot-stomping folk tune with the energy of a runaway train—but Luning shows off his remarkable depth and range on some of the record's more restrained tracks, like the slow-burning "Brother In Chains" and delicate "Gonna Forget About You," which finds him pulling his vocals back to an intimate near-whisper that conveys a world of heartache and regret. "In Hell I Am" started life as an acoustic blues on a resonator guitar before morphing into a fiery, electric rocker, while "Bet It All On Black" takes on a harder, Southern edge, with Luning repeating the mantra, "Ain't no use in holding back."
"It's essentially about a person who's kind of carefree," he says, "and they know that something might not be the best thing to do, but they're going all in with it anyway. They're just going for it, regardless of the outcome and any repercussions they might face."
If that sounds familiar, perhaps like the attitude of a man who might risk everything to drop out of school and move across the country to pursue a dream, it's no coincidence. With songs this good, it's a safe bet that a restless soul like David Luning is going to keep on traveling for a long time to come.
The Tin Pan
8982 Quioccasin Road
Richmond, VA, 23229