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Not finished with Joanna Newsom yet…

The other night I rediscovered an old audience video recording of Joanna Newsom playing live in Philly. I wrote this one up favorably before, but Mike McLatchey does it better at Outer Music Diary. Here’s part of what he said:

…where I was expecting something related to indie rock, I ended up watching a virtuoso harpist and band play a unique blend of folk music, classical sophistication and modern song stylings. Vocally she reminds me quite a bit of a nascent Alanis Morrisette although a Morrisette infected by some old Appalachian folk singer. It’s clear she’s a prodigy and while I was warned about her voice, which must have spawned from the fact she hadn’t started singing until recently, I found her style to be warm and intimate. Her harp playing is another matter, it at least seems masterful, an adjective I’m hesitant to use being that I can count the harpists I know on one hand. But this is skill, just watching her two hands, as independent as a good drummer’s, play counter melodies and rhythms, often changing or doubling tempos within an overall 4 beat itself, was mesmerizing. It’s kind of baffling she has the popularity she does, although her combination of accessible songcraft with virtuoso musicianship is a rare one.

Yes: the joy of this video is getting to see Newsom play harp. Wow. Oh hey, and the torrent is still (barely) alive at Dimeadozen, amazingly enough. Go fetch if you’re a fan, you won’t regret it.

EDIT: Please click through to the comments for a direct download of the video. Thanks to Will Davis!

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2 Responses to “Not finished with Joanna Newsom yet…”

  1. Will Davis Says:

    There is actually no need to look for this video at Dimeadozen. The creator of that video gave me permission a long time ago to share it in any way I choose as long as I shared the true lineage.

    Originally I had posted it on’s short-lived video site, Stage6. When the people at DivX decided to pull the plug on Stage6, I looked for another site to post the show, but couldn’t find any at the time that would allow me to share it at a decent resolution. So, I simply posted it on one of my personal sites. The video is available for anyone to download from the following address:

    And, the true lineage of the video is as follows:

    General Info
    Band: Joanna Newsom
    Place: The First Unitarian Church Sanctuary - Philadelphia, PA
    Date: November 16th, 2006 [11.16.06]
    Length: 1.30.03
    Position: Middle, front, seated

    Camera: JVC GR-DF550U
    Tape: MiniDv
    Video Settings: SP - Widescreen
    Audio Settings: 16 bit - Stereo - Sony ECM-MSD1 Mic

    Ripping & Saving
    Software: Vegas Video 7
    Dimensions: 640X368
    Audio: 224kbps
    File Type: .mpeg > Divx converter

    Show Notes:
    She plays 4 songs from Milk-Eyed Mender and then the entire Ys album. The crowd went crazy for her.

    Everything by shlacking

  2. Brandon Wu Says:

    Thanks, Will! This is great. Definitely no excuse not to grab this now if you’re a Newsom fan.

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