Last night we went to Antone's to see the Heartless Bastards. Chris's comment: "Erika Wennerstrom pulled a Janis Joplin."
First I was irritated and then increasingly mad. She finally asked the crowd (after stumbling and fumbling with her guitar, earplugs, mic, etc. for five minutes between incoherently sung songs), "Anyone notice I'm a little fucked up?" Somehow I felt less mad once she admitted it; at least she wasn't trying to fool us into thinking she wasn't performing well because of technical difficulties and personal preferences, which is how it originally seemed. (Apparently, she is fond of playing with a gray pick and a gray pick only.)
I kept waiting for her to throw up on stage, but we left before the show ended.
Erika Wennerstrom's voice and guitar are the entire magic of the Heartless Bastards, and I mean serious magic. Having seen them playing live and on point more than once now, I can say that the lead trying to perform while completely bombed, or whatever else she may have been, didn't do her band, her music, or the audience any justice at all.
Thirty bucks and what could have been a cozy night on the couch both wasted, but not as wasted as Erika Wennerstrom.