Monday night August 12, Jonathan Richman is playing the debut of a four night residency at the Make-Out Room on 22nd street near Mission street in San Francisco. Tonight and for the rest of the three shows, Jonathan Richman will be performing with Tommy Larkins on drums. A founding member of the Modern Lovers, the veteran singer, songwriter and guitarist was once signed to Berkeley’s Beserkley records.
Not long after 8:00 p.m., Jonathan Richman entered the stage with his guitar as well as Tommy Larkins who took his seat behind the drum kit. After a quick warm up on guitar and introduction by Richman, he sprang into “Her Love is From Somewhere Else”. Next, Richman broke into a short vibrant acoustic guitar and one verse version of George McRae’s “Rock Your Baby”. From there Jonathan Richman played such songs as “Old World”, “Let Her Go Into the Darkness”, “The World is Showing its Hand”, “O Moon, Queen of Night on Earth” and “My Baby Love Love Loves Me”. Throughout the show the devoted crowd got involved giving Jonathan and Tommy clapping rhythms as well as laughs to Richman’s stories and remarks. Richman ended the set with his classic “No One Was Like Vermeer”.
A mostly packed Make-Out Room was very pleased with the show. Jonathan Richman's set is full of commentary, stories and interaction with the crowd. Richman’s distinctive voice style and dynamic playing on the guitar keeps the show intriguing in addition to compelling. Jonathan Richman’s ability to make his live set so intimate and romantic with the crowd is really something to be experienced in person.