By Jared Smelter Contributing Writer
UMF had a free concert from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m on Friday, September 14th, where they hosted psychedelic rock musician, Jeff Beam, with Dominic Lavoie. The concert took place on the Emery Community Arts Center Lawn. It was open to students, faculty, and community members.
Beam usually plays with a band, but Friday night, he played by himself. He performed a mixture of what he called “old stuff” and “new stuff” with a variety of instruments that included guitar and keyboard. He used vocal loops in his arsenal as well to intrigue the audience.
Before the concert, Jeff Beam was able to provide a perspective on what inspired his passion for music. “I would have to give credit to my parents,” Beam said.
“The set was very interesting,” said Lacey Condon, a sophomore at UMF. “It was lit night.” Beam had a mixed set list. He sang the pieces, “Auspicious Minds,” “Clairvoyance” and “Whispering Poison in his Ear.” All three of these songs he wrote and performed himself. He also performed a cover of the David Bowie song, “Golden Years,” with the other songs, “Disarray,” “Stephen King” and “Cherryfield,” by various artists.
Beam, an only child, describes his music as, “a subphonic [rock] and a blend of other types of rock music.” He listened to The Beatles, Aerosmith and Radiohead which aroused his interest in this type of music. He also listened to Crosby Stills and Nash, as well as Jimi Hendrix growing up.
Beam’s favorite band is Radiohead. “They’re making the most complex music that’s still very accessible. They are not cutting any corners,” said Beam. “They are the biggest band that doesn’t compromise logistically. They are able to take this very big vision that they have and execute it on a really big stage and have a lot of people react to it positively.”
Jeff grew up in Green, Maine, about an hour away from Farmington, in the Lewiston and Winthrop area. He went to school all his life there and studied at The University of Southern Maine and Southern Maine Community College in Portland, as well as Emerson College in Boston where he graduated. He lived in New York for a little while and finally moved back to Maine, where he calls home and enjoys touring around.
After the concert, Beam commented that, “the atmosphere was ideal,” and “the people were curious, and a great listening audience.” Beam also thanked the Emery Community Arts Center for having him, and for “supporting local music, and for providing that kind of programming in the Farmington community.”