Last Friday February 21, I attended an amazing show at The Casbah. If you don’t already know what The Casbah is, shame on you! The Casbah is a venue that has been an iconic and integral part of San Diego’s music scene since 1989. They have showcased a number of bands such as: Nirvana, MGMT, The White Stripes, Arcade Fire, Social Distortion, Talib Kweli and The Black Keys. Hopefully those ring a bell, if not, again, shame on you. But if the talented artists and bands aren’t enough to hold your attention they also have pool tables, arcade games and most importantly, a full bar. It is a 21+ venue, so if you are not of legal drinking age my blogs might be your way of vicariously watching these shows. If you are able to attend, I’ll see you there!

Linnea Olsson Taken by: Valeria Sofia Miranda
Linnea Olsson
Credit: Valeria Sofia Miranda

On this particular night Linnea Olsson and Ane Brun were the stars of the show. I had the pleasure of not only listening to Linnea but also interviewing her. The Swedish cellist was a delight. She was humble and sweet and those characteristics were exhibited throughout her performance. She opened her set with the song Ah! (Also the name of her debut album). Her gentle voice and soothing cello quickly filled the room. Ah! set the stage for the rest of her performance. Her second song was quite different. Giddy up featured Linnea’s perfect use of overdub, which allowed for this song to sound as though there was a full orchestra on stage. It was simply layer upon layer of various cello melodies. There were a few other songs in between that I can only describe as melancholy and classical. She ended her performance on an uplifting note with her song Dinosaur. Before playing it, Linnea described it as “a love story that has ended and it’s so good that it has.” Dinosaur was definitely the most poppy song out of them all. It fit perfectly into her genre that she described as “Cello Pop.” I am by no means an expert on the cello but I like to think I know a thing or two about music and based on my knowledge and the crowd’s response, I would say her performance was spectacular.

By the time Linnea finished her set the crowd was already a few beers in, sweaty and wanting more. I watched as people looked at their cell phones and watches, waiting in anticipation for Ane. Finally around 11:00, singer, songwriter and guitarist Ane Brun took the stage. Ane opened up with First Positions. This song got the crowd swinging. Ane herself was dancing and playing with a smile on her face. Her appearance added to her performance. She wore a long black and gold robe that swayed as she danced and long gold earrings to match. She was fabulous! To top off her appearance her voice was, to quote Beyoncé, flawless. Prior to this show I had never heard Ane Brun and I was in awe. She changed the pace with Lullaby for Grown Ups, which was slow and wistful. It’s the kind of song you need to close your eyes to while listening, simply to take it all in. Linnea not only opened for Ane but she also played with her throughout most of her set, this only made every song better. As they were playing I heard people whispering “marvelous” and “amazing”. My personal favorite of Ane’s had to be The Treehouse Song which was reminiscent of Patsy Cline. It had a soft country feel to it, simple message and simple chords which made it perfect. Ane made everything she did; singing, strumming her guitar, dancing and playing piano look effortless.

Watch the video for The Treehouse Song on Youtube.

All in all Linnea and Ane were fantastic. I (and I believe many others) left the show feeling simply fulfilled. I encourage everyone to listen to both of these wonderful ladies. Yet another great show hosted by The Casbah.

Make sure to keep an eye out for my backstage interview with Linnea.