By Steve Weinstein
By Bryan Bierman
By Lindsey Rhoades
By Chaz Kangas
By Ben Westhoff and Sarah Purkrabek
By Jena Ardell
By Jesse Sendejas Jr.
By Katherine Turman
I suggest he might get compared to Rufus Wainwright. This riles him up. "Just because I play the piano?" he says. "So do a lot of other people." I inadvertently annoy him several times actuallyearlier I had told him that his album was great, and that it had the potential to resonate with housewives and young girls and Ryan Adams fans alike. He responded with a distant "OK." It's not that he's a cold guy; he's just largely unaware of whether or not he's good. Which is odd for a musician, and especially one in New York. I thought everyone knew they were good.
This humility isn't really a surprise, though, if you listen to Music For Tourists. It's soft, honest, and wholeheartedly intimate. I tell him that I might use the word intimate to describe his music, and he said OK to that, too, but didn't elaborate. From the moment you put Tourists in and hear his Buckley-ish voice paired with nothing more than a piano and a string section, you start to get a picture of an introspective, humble dude who's probably a bit more inside his head then we typically think 24-year-olds are, which is saying something.
Tourists was recorded over the last two years, in between waiter gigs and bouts of drinking. "The more honest I becamewhich was difficultthe more interesting the songs became," he says. He seems honest about this. We order another round and agree that his brief stint in musical theateran anti-intimate profession if there ever was onewas best abandoned.
Chris Garneau plays Tonic February 2, tonicnyc.com