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For a full review, I attended a live performance. Native to California, Obenski’s current tour sweeps across the state. I caught the artist at Rooz Café in Oakland. The menu matched many other cafés in the East Bay. I am grateful for the space and for the free show. I have rarely found a venue that hosts performing artists without charging at the door. Finally, a restaurant hopes its customers enjoy music without an additional fee! Likewise, Obenski did not try to make an extra profit at this show. I would attend another Amy Obenski performance or would enjoy other artists at Rooz Café.

Obenski played some tracks from Kite and others from previous albums. Specifically, “Take What You’re Given” and “Lady of Tomorrow” from Kite featured on Obenski’s set list. After three or four songs with a guitar, Obenski sat before the piano. I preferred the upbeat songs with the keyboard accompaniment. Her versatility proved more important than either instrument.

Because my coven had planned a ritual for the evening of the show, I left before Obenski’s finale. About to leave, I returned to my seat for “Lady of Tomorrow.” I had heard this song before Obenksi’s performance and knew it had made its way to my favorites.

Some performers have specific styles for interacting with audiences. They require audience participation with lighters, choruses, or specific dance movements. Obenski neither expected nor rejected. After the small crowd in Rooz Café loosened up, Obenski invited her listeners to sing along. She exuded a lighthearted, humorous attitude.

Kite would not make the best party music, except towards the end of the night when the host tries to wind down. I do recommend Kite while studying, bathing, meditating, or preparing for ritual. In Kite, Obenski teaches that every day is a new day, and we never know our full potential. “Rise above me,” Obenski challenges in “Take What You’re Given”!

 

~review by Michelle Mueller

Artist: Amy Obenski

Amy Obenski, 2005

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