Wed. Jan 20th, 2021

The Blue & Gray Press

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

Underground performance brings music to new heights

2 min read
The audience has spoken; they want to hear music at the Underground’s Acoustic Night, and the music made by Boston’s Tall Heights is just what they are looking for.

katie redmiles


The audience has spoken; they want to hear music at the Underground’s Acoustic Night, and the music made by Boston’s Tall Heights is just what they are looking for.

On Tuesday, March 26, the open-mic night in the Underground opened with a poetry reading. Accompanied by electric guitar, poetry’s theme was “Temples.” Though the performer, junior biology major Holden Vanderveer, displayed talent, audience members did not feel that his performance was conducive to the setting.

“I think when most people come, they come for music,” said freshman historic preservation major Katie Finch. “[It’s] not quite what you have in mind.”

Finch’s friend and fellow freshman Ellery Hinson acknowledged the skill level needed for Vanderveer’s pieces, but also agreed it was not suitable for the theme of Acoustic Night. “He does have talent, just very long talent, not the talent for tonight.”

Once the main act appeared, however, the mood of the room changed and became charged with enthusiasm and flirtation.

Tim Harrington and Paul Wright of Tall Heights took the stage with only an acoustic guitar, a cello, and their combined, harmonized voices.

The two covered works from some of their musical influences, such as Bon Iver and Simon and Garfunkel. In addition, they performed their own work from their album “Rafters.”

Harrington and Wright appeared to be a hit with the audience.

“I felt so alive, they really mesmerized me,” said freshman music major Margeaux Faig. “It makes you really appreciate music more.”

Freshman economics and business major Josh Campbell equated watching them to an out-of-body experience.

“It felt like it was me watching me watch them because it was so amazing,” Campbell said.

Campbell had even looked up their videos prior to the performance and requested they play “Skinny Love” by Bon Iver, which they performed as their second-to-last song.

With Wright on the cello and Harrington on guitar, the two blended contemporary and classical sounds to create a rich, folky melody. The audience also responded positivelyto their stage presence.

“They have great chemistry, but they also don’t make you feel left out,” said Faig.

To make the audience more attentive, the two incorporated some humor when speaking in between songs.

Music is definitely important to both Harrington and Wright, but both came into the industry in different ways. Harrington started playing guitar and writing songs to win over a girl when he was 16. He then quickly found that he could not shut off the constant stream of song lyrics flying through his mind.

Wright was first classically trained, which was his introduction to the cello. Althought the instrument was not incorporated in the initial act, they started to try and blend their sounds, and the cello became an integral part.

With one album already out, and an EP in the mix, Tall Heights will continue touring and playing to see where the music takes them.

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