Dayton OH – July 20, 2010
Wednesday night Nick Mitchell and the Skeptical Cats will perform a “Free at Fraze” concert and the weather is one of the big concerns.
One of the challenges of performing at an outdoor venue such as the Fraze Pavilion in Kettering, is that you’re a lot more at the mercy of the elements than you are at Hara or the Nutter Center.
However, it’s often a wonderful experience, and the sound system at the Fraze can make a nice night even more special.
For Nick Mitchell and the Skeptical Cats, this will mark their “fourth annual appearance” at the Fraze, and as Mitchell put it in a recent email, “the last 2 years have been marred by bad weather. We’re hoping for a dry day and the biggest turnout yet!”
Indeed, not just rain, but lightning strikes punctuated the show last year, and cut short an otherwise stellar performance by the Skeptical Cats.
It’s been said that to do the same thing over and over and expect a different outcome is madness, and Mitchell told us about one change that they made this year:
“We’ve done the Mud Volleyball thing the last 3 years, and it has rained every year. Except this year. We decided not to do it, and of course it was a perfect day.”
“We’re hoping it’s a good omen.”
Photo: MediaMoments.com/ Peter Wine
At the Fraze show last year, Mitchell tried to laugh off a shower before the show by starting the show with “it wouldn’t be Skeptical Cats at the Fraze without rain at 6:02, and that’s what we got.”
Nick Mitchell and the Skeptical Cats is a band that has a lot of potential, and last year they performed an original song called “The Wanderer,” about which Mitchell added, “not the one from Dion.”
Mitchell said in an email today (July 20th) that “Skeptical Cats has a long history of releasing and performing their own music.”
He and keyboardist Scot Givens have been songwriting partners for almost 20 years, “releasing CDs throughout the 90s and early 2000s and performing those songs regionally at shows at large venues like Fraze Pavilion, Bogart’s, etc.”
As sometimes happens in the creative process, Mitchell says “There has been a slight “pause” over the last 4 or 5 years in writing and recording, mainly due to the performing schedule that Nick has in the Dayton area, and Scot has in the Hocking Hills, Ohio area.”
It’s a nice problem to have. Mitchell continues, ”Scot is involved with 3 different bands and multiple studio projects “back East”, and Nick performs 260+ solo dates a year in the Tri-State region. However, there’s been a renewed focus on original material recently. The band has been playing more of the older original songs at shows this year, and there has been a lot of writing and recording going on.”
What does this mean to the audience?
“Skeptical Cats are planning a new CD release by Christmas or early 2011, and Nick is working on his first solo album.”
“It’s a great feeling to see a song come to fruition” says Givens. “From a single lyric, chord progression or rhythm, then passed around through the band for tweaking and finally to a release or live performance. It may not end up being a Brandenburg Concerto but it’s ours. Hopefully someone else will like it too, but that is out of our hands.”
Photo: MediaMoments.com/ Peter Wine
Mitchell adds, “We will be debuting some new originals at the Fraze show tomorrow, along with a few of our songs from years past.”
“We’re really excited about getting new songs and new releases out there for the first time in years. At most concerts we will continue to blend our music with “off the beaten path” Deep Tracks classic material, especially at venues where people expect to hear something at least somewhat familiar.”
“But we’re also looking forward to playing a lot of shows that feature only what’s come out of our hearts and minds, and not somebody else’s. Hopefully our songs become just as familiar to our fans as the covers we chose.”
And perhaps this year, Nick Mitchell and the Skeptical Cats will be able to finish their list of the “seven crown jewels of British rock.”
On the web
Skeptical Cats 2009 Fraze concert photos (part 1)
Skeptical Cats 2009 Fraze concert photos (part 2)
Fraze web site
Skeptical Cats web page
Our earlier stories on the Skeptical Cats
Skeptical Cats to show off new tunes tonight at the Fraze in Kettering, Ohio
Skeptical Cats headline Free at Fraze Wednesday at the Fraze in Kettering, Ohio