As I headed to the kitchen to fix myself a drink, my mother eyed me with suspicion. “Where are you going?” she asked as I poured gin into my glass already half-filled with cool tonic water, lemon slices, and rosemary. “To Bacchanal!” I responded, my face shining with way too much highlighter for someone who is quarantined. She frowns “Where?”
Although stuck at home, Columbia University students still got to enjoy the wonder that is Bacchanal last Friday from 6:30 pm to 12:30 pm EST. Streaming directly from their rooms, 13 student musicians shared their talent in live performances on Bacchanal’s official Instagram page (@CUBacchanal).
With my broken headphones and slow internet connection, I sat on my bed in my childhood bedroom. Sipping my gin & tonic, I logged onto Instagram while texting my friends on my laptop, ready to enjoy some great music.
Dang3r Bail3y opened the night of concerts, singing about summer, dropping out, and sex dreams. With her smooth vocals and an array of interesting instruments (including kazoos, harmonicas, tambourines, and triangles) Bailey had me dancing around my room and singing along to her memorable choruses.
Next was Eva Westphal, who both broke and mended my heart with her set. The delicate guitar playing and vulnerable lyrics, had me holding my breath, in awe of her velvety voice. Her gorgeous rendition of a Taylor Swift song actually brought tears to my eyes.
Sarah Kinsley (whose debut EP “The Fall” is coming out on Friday) treated viewers to several original songs, impeccably played both on the guitar and the keyboard. Ranging from sad ballads about love (“Too”), to confusing relationships (“Serious”) and feeling unlovable (“Unlovable Woman”), Kinsley’s lyrics were incredibly relatable and well written.
After a quick dinner break, I was just in time to watch Jane Watson’s set. Sitting in her car (“It’s where the best speakers are!”), Watson played several of her beautifully produced synth-pop songs. Beaming with excitement and singing like an angel, she delivered a fun and timely set (with lyrics such as “The world is ending but at least we’re going out with a bang”).
Cedric St Louis and Fat Westbrook took it away next, with impressive raps and refreshing beats. Bouncing off each other with contagious enthusiasm, both sang recently songs and freestyled live, to the audience’s delight. It was impossible not to sing along to their catchy lyrics!
Moving back and forth from her living room to her bedroom, Wander Marchal crushed her set, smiling and joking throughout. Winner of “The Battle of the Bands” and known for her packed Postcrypt performance, Marchal did not disappoint. Playing beloved “Don’t Want You Anymore” on the guitar and closing with “Home with You” on the piano with her mother, she had me feeling the full range of human emotions in 25 minutes.
The last set I watched was Maude Latour, who also performed mostly unreleased songs. Sitting by the keyboard, Latour sang about youth and heartbreak. She tugged my heartstring with her raspy voice and emotional lyrics. The night felt endless as heard her singing, her lyrics almost reading my mind.
Overall, I was surprised at how much fun I had at online Bacchanal. Even though I would much rather be sitting in the lawns, the sun beaming down on me and the crowd of students, watching the Instagram lives made me feel connected to campus. It was an exciting way to start my weekend and a nice reminder of what’s to come next year!
What could’ve been via Bwog Archive