On January 20th, 2017, the day our new President was inaugurated and spouted nationalist rhetoric to the thousands who were in town, my buddy and I drove to Pittsburgh to get outta DC and see Craig Finn play an intimate show in an office space.
Seeing Craig in this particular setting playing songs from his new album appropriately named "We All Want The Same Things" was extremely cathartic for me. We sat on the floor and listened to songs about people who've seen better days, but are so damn positive that those better days are still reachable and right over that horizon.
This blue collar optimism in the face of defeat is the signature of any Finn-penned song. The new songs on the upcoming record are no different, if maybe a little darker at times. Those characters are still there fucking up, but getting back up and fighting back. If this isn't a metaphor for the times we're in right now, man, I don't know what is.
I'd never seen a show in this setting, and I gotta say, it was wonderful. It was something I'd highly recommend to anyone who is within driving distance to see one of their favorite musicians play an incredibly intimate show to fewer than 50 folks. It gives a real sense where the artist was when that song was created. It didn't hurt that Craig made time for some questions during the show, so it was a real insight into some of his songs.
I think most in the room, including Craig, felt a little weird about what had just happened earlier in the day. I think everyone felt a little better about the world afterwards. Maybe not for too long, but at least for a little bit. And, dammit, that's what music is for. Craig Finn is a national treasure and I can't wait to hear this album in full. Go pre-order this album here and I can guarantee you you won't be disappointed.