From the man who brought us The ORIGINALS and Monsters series of events, once again, POL Arida orchestrated yet another unique even in the SL music community. This event, titled "COVERED," can only be called a tribute to the man and his music. On Sunday, 28 November, at the Idle Rogue venue, 10 enormously talented musicians came together, each covering one or more of POL's original songs.
The event was coordinated by Ms. Elura Galacia, an avid fan, who played the gracious host throughout the two and a half hour event. The venue was donated by ChryBlind Scribe and the all musicians donated their time, performing free of charge.
Opening up the show with 'Brief Encounter' were Lexie Luan and Zorch Boomhauer. This was followed with the pairing of Zorch and Nya Raymaker, Zorch streaming from the US and Nya from Germany. They performed the very poignant song 'The Suicide of Jane,' a song based on a RL experience of POL's.
Next up was Hazideon Zarco, another well known musician, doing his rather interesting rendition of the song '1,' a song about collective and singular responsibility in the world. Taking the stage next was the talented DeadEye Foggarty, who did a very POL-like version of 'Gotta Get Out of Here.' With a slightly slower tempo, DE did the song incredible justice. He next performed 'The Last Song,' ad libbing POL's story about this song with his own version of POL's encounter with the dreaded Joneses and the awful spaghetti Bolognese, as well as the rather less than satisfying consequences of the actions on that chaotic evening. Well done, DE, very creative indeed.
This was followed by a Lexie solo cover of 'Mother of Three' accompanied by Zorch on guitar. Lexie commented that she chose this song because it has personal meaning for her. Most especially, it has deep meaning for POL as it is written about his own mother, widowed at a young age leaving her alone to fend for herself and her 3 boys. Zorch then performed 'Love Confessions of a Serial Killer' with Lexie accompanying, followed by 'Happy Go Lucky Girl' with a very Zorch twist.
Rising to the occasion next was the inimitable Grace McDunnough performing 'Welcome to Winter' in her sultry style as only Grace can do. Following Grace was "bad boy" himself, BlindBoy Gumbo. BB commented that the first time he heard POL he thought he was rubbish; the second time, worse than rubbish. Fortunately, he came around by the third, fourth or fifth time (BB, why did you keep coming back?). BB played 'Catch the Wind.' Imagine POL a la Gumbo, slide guitar and all!
Once the piano movers got her piano into place on the stage, Phemie Alcott did a beautiful piano version of POL's recent song 'Winning.' Strum Diesel followed Phemie on the piano, leading with one of his own songs and ending with a beautiful segue into POL's 'Passion.' It should be noted that Strum performed while standing on his head on the keyboard!
Next the mastermind of this fantastic event, POL Arida himself took the stage. He performed a handful of songs not covered by any of the other musicians, including, appropriately, 'Screaming Song for a Retard,' which is a personal commentary on how the laws treat mentally retarded adults who unwittingly commit a crime. He also performed 'War Zone,' 'Immune to Collusion,' 'Home' and 'The Birds Fall Down.'
Wrapping up the show, POL commented on the interesting spin the others had done with the covers of his songs. He also noted that during his time performing in SL, not only did his fan base grow, but it included other musicians, which has to be the highest compliment and honor any musician can have. He stated that in the virtual world of SL, music as an art form has not been forgotten or ignored but rather embraced as a true artistic expression, with words that actually convey ideas, thoughts and feelings, contrary to commercial mainstream music.
This event was truly a success and clearly demonstrated the mutual admiration among the musicians here in SL. I look forward to possible future events like this.
(edit, some days after the event, it was made clear Pol Arida was not behind the event)