The evening began with opening group Happy Tank, comprised of Heeyoon Chang ’01 and Luis Hernandez ’01. This duo set the tone well and warmed up the audience with several cover songs and one original tune.
Chang was generally too tentative with her vocals, but she carried herself well, and her sweet smile kept listeners attentive. Hernandez displayed some skillful guitar work on an accurate rendition of Eric Clapton’s “Tears in Heaven,” and he did a nice job with the tricky picking pattern in “Landslide,” by Stevie Nicks.
When Greene took the stage, she immediately grabbed the audience’s attention with a funny anecdote and opened her set with an upbeat new song-a gutsy move that paid off. Although her guitar was too loud when the song began, she belted out the lyrics like a pro until the sound was adjusted.
After another song, called “Where I’ve Been,” that showed off her powerful, melodic voice, Greene livened up the show with guest stars Dempsey Hughes ’01 and Reggie Jackson ’01. Hughes, a member of the Bluestockings, sang harmony on one song. Her part was occasionally too loud, but her soulful vocals blended well with Greene’s singing, and Greene’s steady guitar beat made the song a success. Jackson rocked on electric guitar in the next number, while Greene again showed her ability to work the audience by inviting listeners to sing along during the chorus.
Greene displayed her versatility by slowing down the pace in the next song, “Tribute to Heartbreak,” a beautiful ballad supported by a pretty fingerpicking melody. She faltered on the lyrics, but drew appreciative laughter and loud applause after a great recovery in which she realized that the lyrics she had forgotten were actually about words beginning to fail.
The next several songs were consistently engaging, with interesting guitar lines and intelligent lyrics. Greene displayed a quirky sense of humor on a song about the weirdos in her study abroad program, singing, “I am learning to accept diversity / What a perfect case study, right at my university.”
You could call Greene an up-and-coming artist, but in terms of her singing, songwriting and professionalism, she is an artist who is already there.
For more information and upcoming tour dates, visit Greene’s website a www.emilygreene.com.