Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Singer/Songwriter and Pianist Wow Audience at The Buttonwood Tree

We all know The Buttonwood Tree to be a great place for all kinds of artists to meet and showcase their talents. Saturday night's performances were no exception. Brian Colburn, a singer/songwriter from New Jersey came to Connecticut to exhibit his original work. The background stories of Colburn's songs were relevant to people of all ages. “Perfect Imperfections” is about knowing everything a person does due to social networking like Facebook, then not having anything to say to them in person. This is a problem any Internet-savvy person deals with, but Colburn is able to captivate even the smallest of situations through song. His catchy, feel-good music was appropriate for the hot summer we've been having. With songs like country-reminiscent, “Simple” and “A Summer Song,” Colburn performed with a smile on his face and obvious delight. The audience, like the performer himself surely enjoyed themselves.

Brian Colburn

Following Colburn's set, Berklee student and pianist, Ryan Heidel, played originals like “Red Wine” and “Shadow Man.” “Shadow Man” in particular surprised me with its dark, whimsical lyrics. The words of Heidel's songs were incredibly mature for such a young voice. It wasn't just his talent on the piano that struck me about this artist, but his honesty as well. He acknowledged the fact that he wasn't a stellar student and he should probably quit his day job as a landscaper, but it was this rebellion that makes him an admirable musician. Like many performers, Heidel and Colburn strive for artistic freedom and are not afraid to take risks. Whether its performing completely original sets or writing music that does not fit the constraints of today's radio, these men impressed the audience with their expertise.

Ryan Heidel

Both Colburn and Heidel were supportive of each other throughout the evening and despite never having met before, played an impromptu cover of a new Tom Petty song. Their effortless arrangement awed the audience and shed light on the great opportunities that can be found at The Buttonwood Tree.

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