Sunday, November 02, 2014

CMJ 2014: Day 5 (technically) with KATE MILLER-HEIDKE & PHEBE STARR!

Yup, this is a little (well, a lot) late but as many of you know, Halloween is a tough time for me at the ol' day job. But back to our regularly scheduled programming here...

For those of you who are unfamiliar with CMJ, it's a five day music festival that invites a thousand or so new, indie, and/or up and coming artists from around the world to New York City with one goal: the discovery of fabulous new music. For more info, check out


L to R: Kate Miller-Heidke, Oxford & Co., Phebe Starr // (C)
DAY FIVE (I had a schedule planned for DAY FOUR, but due to other complications, it didn't end up working out...sad face) and my final day at CMJ was spent at a bar on the LES (Lower East Side). The Delancey is a small, multi-level space, with an upstairs stage (where I stayed) and a downstairs stage. Upstairs was a glorified sitting booth transformed into a "stage" with little amplification. Basically it defined the word "intimate".

The Delancey was home to a lot of themed artist showcase offerings during CMJ and that Saturday was dubbed the "Australian Barbecue", hosted by Sounds Australia, featuring all artists from Down Under. There was also an extreme influx of Australia-to-New York transplants who were there for support so finding an actual American in the audience was a bit harder to come by.

I first stopped by in the early afternoon and caught the tail end of Totara Jack's set. Although a solo artist, he was accompanied by another handsome bloke. He has a jam on Spotify called "Supercolliders" that has elements of electro mixed in with electric guitar. Fun stuff.

Following him was another one of my most anticipated artists not just of CMJ but period -- I've been a fan of Kate Miller-Heidke pretty much since this blog began in 2008! She's currently been living in New York for a while whilst performing regularly at the Metropolitan Opera house in their production of "The Death of Klinghoffer". Her gorgeous and ridiculously talented vocal range was on full display as she performed mostly songs from her latest album, O Vertigo!.

Dressed in a dark, sparkle-shimmery blue dress with a burgundy hat and bright red lips, Kate kept the crowd transfixed. She played keyboard and tambourine in addition to singing, accompanied by a handsome partner in crime playing guitar. My favorite moments included the ever-so-Kate midtempo jam "Lose My Sh*t" and the epic "Yours Was The Body" (above).

After Kate (& some food), I returned to The Delancey to catch bit of Oxford & Co, a duo group of attractive 'Stralian boys in suits no less. Their sound had a bit of a country jam feel despite their posh look. My favorite was "Love Is Gone", complete with whistle solos.

My final act of the night and of CMJ itself was recent birthday girl Phebe Starr. Dressed in all black with super high white platforms Go Go Boots that Baby Spice would be proud of, bright blue lips and fiery orange hair, Phebe looks every bit the consummate alt-electro popstar. Standing on stage alone, she belted out a barrage of great dance jams that deserve everyone's attention. My favorite is easily "Jurassica" but her latest, "The Night" (a collaboration with Capetown), is a great one, too.

Get to know these artists on le Twitter via: @TotaraJack, @KMillerHeidke, @OxfordAndCo, and @PhebeStarr.

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