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8224 Santa Monica Blvd.
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323-848-9760
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Ready to take your life back from methamphetamine?
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Sundown On Sunset: Jessica Felman
05/26/2011
Music by Sean Patrick, West Hollywood, California

 

Any given night in Los Angeles, and especially West Hollywood, it’s easy to walk into any club for a beer, and hear an artist new to you changing the shape of a room with music. 


Jessica Felman’s album, “Starting Over” is available on iTunes. Photo by Sean Patrick.

I rediscovered the Voodoo Room a few weeks ago; it’s the bar off the main dining room at the House of Blues. 

I can get lost in the HOB with all it’s hallways and rooms and the sitting room/elevator there, but the Voodoo room springs up out of the second floor, has a great view, and a certain comfort to it. 

One of my favorite things about going to shows, as a writer or just as a fan, is that the audience is always at least partly made up of other musicians. 

They come out for their friends, or they’re on the bill, and the room is always brimming with talent. 

People may want to slam LA for being a hard networking town, but I find the concentration of musicians to be among the hardest working of artists, and some of the friendliest strangers around.

In a circle of players and fans one night, I struck up a conversation with Jessica Felman, and it wasn’t until after a couple of laughs that we both realized the music connection. 

She was there to see her friend play, and I was there with a friend of mine to see what turned out to be the same band. 

As it turned out, Jessica was launching her CD the next week in the same room.

Anytime you pick up someone’s CD, you’re picking up a piece of not only their wallet, but also their soul.  Musicians are on their own to finance and produce their work into something salable, but it starts with the emotion. 


Jessica Felman’s album, “Starting Over” is available on iTunes. Photo by Sean Patrick.

Jessica’s album, “Starting Over”, by her own account, represents not so much a metamorphosis, as just a strong first step away from the past.

Opening her set with Fall Down, Jessica seemed to start us off with the lowest place a heart can be; helpless in love before you know if it’s returned. 

“I fall down so hard into the deepest hole of all.  I fall down in your arms, of all the places I could fall.” 

Win or lose, the winner doesn’t take all, because there’s no place to go from here but up.  Jessica’s lyrics tell her story from behind your own eyes.  Sometimes it hurts.

Jessica has an honest, girl-next-door smile, and the stage didn’t set her away from the crowd, but brought her into it. 

As always, it was a smattering of her friends and other bands, and it happened to be her mother’s birthday as well.  Whatever energy she drew from, she played it out to us and we smiled. 

Breaking up the set was a cover of Michael Jackson’s Rock With You.  I’m a firm believer that any song is, at it’s base, lyrics and melody. 

This acoustic version was a tribute that brought the original back to memory, and left us with a new imprint of what the song could be. 


Jessica Felman’s album, “Starting Over” is available on iTunes. Photo by Sean Patrick.

I thought it was very creative and well done, and so, obviously, did the rest of the room.

The album’s namesake song, “Starting Over” is one of those tracks that, no matter how well recorded, will take on a life of it’s own in a performance, because Jessica lives it. 

“Sometimes I feel like you’re so far away.  Sometimes I feel like you’ll never go away.” 

It’s a love-hate relationship with love that is very personal, and that makes it universal.  The energy picks up with the chorus, “ I’m starting over again”, not because it’s supposed to, but because it’s time.  

The set seemed to be taking us all on the journey to start over.  The folk/pop passion in “Bend” was a great first step back.  “At times I get lost, but it’s worth the cost, ‘cause you know I’ll be there in the end.”  Before we  let go,  there’s “Still Want You Back.” 

Closing her set with “The Loss”, she paints a picture of that one step behind her.  “I’ve been defeated by you, there’s nothing I can do.  There’s nothing I can do with you.” 

There’s no shortage of heartache in the world, or in music.  Whatever your medium, you have to fill your canvas with what you have. 

The Loss holds the glimmer that even though she’s defeated, it’s a recognition that it’s over.

Jessica Felman’s album, “Starting Over” is available on iTunes, and you can check out her prolific LA tour at www.JessicaFelman.com

You’re not so defeated after all, Jessica. 

 

Sean Patrick is a writer, musician, and WeHo News’ Sunset Strip reporter.  Catch his latest at www.SeanPatrick.us

 

 

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