There’s usually such a gap between the downtown music scene and UGA that one wouldn’t know the other even existed if not for WUOG, frat bands, and the countless art/English majors that make up 80% of the groups. That fact is why I was surprised when a Telecommunications professor announced an “Athens Music” day in his class. I nearly died.
The class began with a youtube video of a certain famous Athens band playing its most famous song. Something about being in a spotlight… Anyway, it was interesting to see how many people recognized the song. Most disturbing though was the number of whispers I heard asking “Wait, they’re from Athens?!”. We need to do a better job training the freshies. That’s all I’m saying.
Students had been invited to bring in local artists from around town. It was a pretty decent mix of genres and levels of talent. First up was the Corduroy Road. Three of the members played a bouncy little tune about a flood. Lovely sense of humor those guys have. The crowd responded pretty well and fired a few questions which were easily answered.
Next came two singer-songwriters. The first sounded a bit like Death Cab for Cutie and the second sounded like Dave Matthews. Say what you want about wearing your influences on your sleeve but I find it helpful in deciding if I’m interested in an act or not.
Paul McHugh of Mother Jackson and the Ginger Envelope was next, picking a slow and twangy tune on a dark and wicked old looking guitar. It sounded like it should’ve been a part of the “Oh Brother Where Art Thou?” soundtrack. The class really seemed to get into the mood of it.
Paul was followed by a rap/hip-hop group called Wild Kard. I’m not the best of judges when it comes to this kinda stuff but I liked their song. Sure, a lot of it was about bumping and grinding and getting ‘underneath the covas’ but it was a change of pace and thusly enjoyed.
Overall, the class was pretty happy about being treated to a free concert. It’s not how I might’ve handled an Athens Music Day (we’d be there for hours, possibly days), but as far as classes go, you should be kicking yourself if you skipped.