Words and Photos by Tori Dickson
An old college friend – one who’s music taste is one of the few I trust completely – introduced me to Furman’s music and I’m a little ashamed of how long it took before I really invested enough time to fall in love with his music. He was always one of those artists you know you love but don’t listen to that often, partly because it’s got some strangeness to it that other people might not appreciate if they’re around. After last night I am completely head over heels. Other peoples’ ears be damned.
The second song in the set was a Velvet Underground cover, “Rock & Roll” (one of my personal favorites) which seemed appropriate as there were times throughout the show when Furman reminded me a bit of Lou Reed in his persona and mannerisms. He’s very polite but also very honest. At other times the Chicago native reminded me of Tom Waits, with his occasionally scratchy voice and a hint of strange blues. Despite these comparisons to two great musicians, Furman is still very much his own person making his own sounds. His bashful and quirky stage presence creates a fun and inviting setting for the band and the crowd.
As evidenced by the photos below, Furman brought a lot of energy to the stage, squirming and twirling around with his guitar, belting out his songs while the rest of the band danced along. He made it clear that he feels lucky that people appreciate that he’s doing something he loves. He’s right to feel lucky: very few people get to make a life of music and even fewer are this good at it.
Furman and his band, the Boyfriends, have a new album out this year, Perpetual Motion People. I highly recommend giving it a listen or two or three.
See more of Tori’s Ezra Furman photos on our Flickr page.