Every once in a while you see something truly new and different, and it shocks you out of life’s stupor. The ol’ TiVo caught a Conan rerun the other day that featured the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players that was jaw-droppingly good and I can’t get the performance out of my head.
The act is half performance art, half comedy, and a tiny bit of indie music, but there’s enough wackiness and honesty that makes it all work. A family of three, the dad plays the piano and sings, the 9 year old daughter sings and plays drums while the mom runs a slideshow projector loaded with slides bought at garage sales around the country. The songs are simple and based on the subject matter of the slides, and sound like they were written in an afternoon.
The weird part is that they sell CDs, but you kind of have to see the slides for the songs to make sense, and there isn’t a smooth way to do that online. NPR did a piece that featured a song with slides that works pretty well, but seeing them live on stage is about the only way to get the full experience.