A line wrapped around Rhino Records on Sunday of people waiting to see singer-songwriter Kimya Dawson, whose songs were featured in the movie Juno.
At the head of the line was a high school sophomore named Melanie, who brought a stuffed panda as a gift for Dawsons daughter, Panda. Melanie told me she discovered Dawson from Juno and instantly felt simpatico: Its like she pulled these songs from my brain. Its kind of creepy.
The store was cleared of customers before some 400 fans, many of them under 30, were allowed inside for the free show. It was said to be the best-attended in-store performance in Rhino’s 34-year history. Most of the audience hung on Dawsons every utterance and seemed thrilled to be there.
In a rarity for an in-store show, Dawson was onstage for a full 90 minutes, performing 18 tunes in her sing-song, stream-of-consciousness style.
And thats even though she said she was suffering from a cold and got only an hours sleep the previous night because of attending the indie-film Spirit Awards ceremony. Her band members took over in the middle of the Rhino show, performing eight more songs, to give her a rest break.
Strumming a guitar, Dawson sang songs from previous albums, the soundtrack and a just-recorded children’s album.
Sorry if you just came today out of curiosity, and then theres all this, Dawson remarked toward the end. But all my shows are like this.
On my way out I ran into an unexpected fan: developer Randall Lewis. He said hed enjoyed himself. Who knew he had such out-there taste?
I dont think hes going to give Dawson a free house, though.