Caleb Engstrom, the new-age Iowan hippie


Apr 22 2006, 21:12

I first saw Caleb Engstrom live about five months ago at one of my friends' Christmas parties at a local venue he rents out every so often. I'd never heard of the guy, but the word on the street was that I was really going to be in for a treat. Before the show, Caleb and a friend of his that he was touring with, were sitting at a booth to the side of the room, completely alone. No one had even touched their CDs, posters, and merch for sale. My friend Greg and I saw that he was selling his button collection (an enormous box of random Iowan buttons) and we moved in on the kill. We started talking to the guys, and had a pretty good time. I hardly realized after hearing him play how lucky I was to be in his presence. I have never heard a better live show (Besides Mindless Self-Indulgence a few years back, but they're a completely different genre, and a totally different world altogether.) ahh, I was completely in awe. I was surprised that after the show no one was really oohing and ahhing and gushing as much as I was about how fantastic this guy was, but most of the people from my area have horrible taste in music anyways.

His lyrics are completely perfect in every way.
His sound is one that heals.
His voice is soft and soothing.
All that could possibly explain the feeling of his music is: WOW.

If you like Cat Power, The Honorary Title, Pedro the Lion, Iron & Wine, Modest Mouse, Rogue Wave, Maria Taylor, old Jewel, etc. I think you'll enjoy Caleb Engstrom. I'm pretty sure he's still touring, so you may want to check him out on myspace and purevolume for details. Trying to find his music on limewire, bitcomet, azureus, and Kazaa is completely useless, but his first full-length album, The Building of Day One, is available at the iTunes music store for $9.99 and I highly reccomend it.


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