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Yeasayer Use Percussion to Keep Lollapalooza Crowd Mellow

August 1, 2008 11:15 PM ET

For a band whose sound is so manic, Yeasayer played it cool during their Friday afternoon set. The Brooklyn quartet's African beats, tropical samples and Middle Eastern drones brought a taste of the world to Grant Park, while its loose grooves kept the mood laid back and the audience cool. Percussion reigned supreme. Nothing that could be hit with a mallet, drumstick or hand was safe. And despite the serious look on his face, vocalist-keyboardist Chris Keating spread positive messages and entertained with robotic dance moves. Songs such as "Wait for the Summer" and "2080" rattled with psychedelic intent, while "No Need to Worry" summed up why the group's music went down so easily.

More Lollapalooza Coverage: Rock 'N' Roll Diary

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

More Song Stories entries »
 
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