Akron Sound Remains Strong With Sarah & Jayson Benn
Patrons of the Music Box venue packed the main floor’s Supper Club to hear Shivering Timbers, another little band from Akron, Ohio, with two polished entertaining sets Saturday night as part of the club’s Lucky Seven Concert Series. Although the husband and wife team of lead singer/upright bass player Sarah Benn and electric guitarist Jayson Benn have been performing and touring around the country for the past five years in support of their two record releases We All Started in the Same Place (2010) and Sing, Sing (2012), they are two of our more cherished musical ambassadors who still call Northeast Ohio home.
Accompanied by percussionist Daniel Kshywonis, the duo opened the night with the sultry “D.H. Lawrence” with Sarah center stage bashfully checking out the audience with her big, beautiful brown eyes. Jayson layered soft chords from his Les Paul guitar throughout the first set which included original numbers “Crooked Old Man”, “All Our Days” and the gorgeous “Big Fire”. The dinner set also included nice interpretations of a Jolie Holland song called “Old Fashioned Morphine”, the Les Paul and Mary Ford classic “World is Waiting for the Sunrise”, and show stopper “Manner of Speaking” by Nouvelle Vague. Their darling seven year old daughter Suzi came on stage to play harmonica, under the direction of her father Jayson, on the Django Reinhardt number “Sweet Sue, Just You” which closed out the set.
Sarah and Jayson, who began singing and crafting songs together for their infant daughter, were discovered by Dan Auerbach after being invited to perform at his birthday party. The first album was cut at Dan’s former Akron studio and gave Shivering Timbers that extra little something every musician needs in order to be noticed. Round two began with Sarah singing the lovely “Holly Holy” by Neil Diamond that was covered on the Sing, Sing album. From there, Jayson switched to a Fender for the second set consisting mostly of original numbers including the blistering Appalachian laced “Annalee”, the big crashing sounds of “Generations”, and the mystically dark “Wayfaring Stranger”. Suzi adored the audience once again with her presence on “The Moppying Floor”. The band closed out the evening with a blistering “Evening Prayer” which had elements of a gospel Janis, some crazy Jimi guitar soloing, and a little country cow punk.
A few new numbers laced into both sets included “Married Girl”, “Someday Soon (Ohio)”, “Good”, and the radio friendly “Don’t Be Afraid”. With plans for a new album in the works, expect to hear more from Shivering Timbers on a national listening level.