Echo Park Rising certainly did not disappoint this year. The line-up was fantastic. I was treated to four solid days of endless shows from just about all the best bands in Los Angeles, and I made sure I didn’t waste one minute of it. I devoured all of those free shows like candy. I saw killer performances by The Schizophonics, Alice Bag, The Paranoyds, Death Hymn Number 9, Cheap Tissue, Traps PS, Cat Scan, Egrets On Ergot, Ex-Stains, Qui, etc. It was one hell of a fun weekend.
But the band that blew me away more than anyone else was Sie Sie and the Sad Sacks. Sie Sie Benhoff gave a powerful, absolutely stunning performance to a packed crowd on The Echo patio last Saturday afternoon. It’s hard to pinpoint her music. It’s reminiscent of Janis Joplin’s “Kozmic Blues” album fused with Ryan Adams. Her band was tight, and between her powerful, soulful, heartfelt singing (what a voice!) and the sweet sound of that steel guitar, I ended up leaving The Echo with tears in my eyes. It felt like someone had grabbed me by the shoulders and shook the hell out of me. I was MOVED. Afterwards, my punk rock feet took me across the street to see two of my favorite bands The Paranoyds and Alice Bag, but the show I kept thinking about for the rest of the night (and weekend) was Sie Sie and the Sad Sacks. It’s Thursday evening, and I’m STILL thinking about it.