Amsterdam Fringe Festival presents AFP

I didn’t think I would be talking about seeing the same musician perform live more than once. I thought “okay, you see them live, you are satisfied, that is it”. I proved myself wrong on several musicians and bands, including Iron and Wine, and most importantly Amanda Palmer.

I like her music, her interesting/clever/funny lyrics, and mostly her personality. I like the way she needs to connect to people, which makes the people (her fans) connect to her in a strange way, through twitter or facebook or what have you.

So when she came on stage in Melkweg in Amsterdam on Wednesday night (during the Amsterdam Fringe Festival), and started singing “F*ck The Police” – referencing her arrest in Amsterdam last May during a ninja gig – everyone knew what was going on. They were singing with her, feeling the solidarity.

The Jane Austen Argument opened for Amanda on Wednesday, with tales from the JAA and collaborating on the Australia inspired AFP album “Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under“. Jason Webley followed, modifying his set-list to make sure that half the audience who had watched him a year ago in Melkweg would not be bored. Amanda had the same worry, but turns out she and her band did not really have a strict set-list anyway, so that was okay.

photo by DANIËL DE BORGER & ROARe-zine

One of the most interesting parts was to have Neil Gaiman on stage (AFP’s husband, and the author of the book I just finished reading). First he and AFP auctioned a painting, and to my amazement there was a lot of interest to it. Then, Neil Gaiman sang a song from the 8in8 project albumNighty Night“. “The Problem With Saints”, a song about Joan of Arc, is quite witty, and references Utrecht, where AFP’s sister now lives with her Dutch fiance.

Overall, I can’t really say what I think about the new AFP songs that were played during the concert. I find it hard to judge when I listen to a new song live for the first time. They sounded fine, and they made everyone dance, but I’d need to listen to it outside of a concert venue to know for sure. But I know that everyone who came to the concert, the ones who had been to other AFP concerts, and the ones who were there for the first time, everyone was enjoying themselves. Some even more than others. It was a pleasure, as always.


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