It’s hard to type the words “Craig Finn played my living room last night” without feeling like I’m writing a work of fiction. Craig Finn… the Craig Finn. Lead singer of The Hold Steady.  He was in my living room last night, playing an acoustic set, taking questions from the 60+ people who were crammed into the living room, craning their necks from the dining room, peering around the corner from the front hallway, angling for a better view from the stairs.

I could gush for hours, nay, days, about how amazing it was, and what a brilliant singer/songwriter/poet Craig is. But mostly what I’m feeling today (besides a bit tired) is grateful.

Grateful for Craig Finn… for sharing his words and music with us. For opening up his heart and baring his soul.

Grateful for Liz Felix from WNKU-FM, who did a fantastic job as the evening’s MC.

Grateful for Undertow Music, the company that organizes these living room tours… they made it incredibly easy to play host.

Grateful for Craig’s faithful fans, who came not just from the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area, but from hundreds of miles away… from Louisville and Lexington and Indianapolis and all points in between. To a person, they were fun, kind and gracious.

Grateful for my wife, who didn’t bat an eye when I told her merely a week ago that we’d be hosting Craig’s gig, and that more than 40 strangers would be coming into our humble abode. We’ve been married long enough that she’s used to my off-the-beaten-path, indie rock music tastes, my trips to way more concerts than a 52-year-old father of four should be attending… but hosting a living room concert takes it to a whole new level.

Grateful that many of my music-loving friends  were able to attend. We come from all walks of life, but music is our common bond, and it’s always more fun to share a show with other aficionados.

Grateful for a chance to see an amazing musician in a one-of-a-kind setting.

“Even if you don’t get converted tonite you must admit that the band’s pretty tight.” 


Here’s a great quote from Craig about why he chose to do a living room tour, from an interview in Columbus Alive:

What made you want to do a living room tour?

“There’s all kinds of reasons people go to a rock club. It’s not always to listen to the music. To do a living room show with new material where it’s just me and a guitar, people are there to hear it. And they haven’t heard the songs before, so it’s nice that the lyrics are able to cut through. They’re able to understand it in a way they wouldn’t be able to with a loud rock band in a different environment.

On a more political level, the way we communicate through the internet, and the fake news that’s come up in the past year, getting people together in a room is more and more important. I think that’s how things move forward – getting together in real time.”

My friends and I, just hanging out with Craig from Edina on a Wednesday night.

Craig Finn’s third solo release, We All Want The Same Things, comes out March 24th, and is available for pre-order now (with bonus content also available) via PledgeMusic.