John Elliott “It Doesn’t Matter: Volume 2”

On Friday I tweeted about John Elliott after seeing his set at McCabe’s and used the term “singer/songwriter.” I’ve seen him perform a few times and I opened for him earlier this year. He is one of the best there is. Tonight I saw him perform at WitZend and I need to tell you that “singer/songwriter” is an extremely limiting description.

I was not sure what I would be seeing, but I knew I did not want to miss John perform his one-man show, “IT DOESN’T MATTER WHY IT IS, IT DOESN’T MATTER IF IT’S WRONG: Volume 2.” An album of the same name will be available for a limited time, from the first presidential debate until the Election, as a digital-only release through his website.

John told me tonight would be different than McCabes. “It’s going to get weird.”

After his sound check he disappeared. The fog machine hit the stage lights. The pre-recorded tracks, costume changes and instrument-switching began. Unaffiliated “with all parties, candidates and issues,” John has written a passionately anti-political masterpiece. The audience goes on a drive across a dark, absurd, struggling America with a guy who spends most of every year doing that.

There are a few chances to see this show in San Francisco and Olympia. The album is available to download starting Wednesday only until November 6. As Charlie Wolf said, “This show should be at Largo. This show should be at The Hollywood Bowl.”

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