This past weekend in L.A., Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros played a series of shows underneath a big top circus tent in L.A.’s State Historic Park. Surrounding the tent were midway games that were free (perhaps due to the lack of prizes), flea market stands set up to look like sideshow acts, and a Ferris wheel. The absence of any apparent corporate sponsorship was refreshing, and made it obvious that this event was more about fun for the band than a cash grab.
Although the four evening shows were adults-only, the band played one all-ages matinee on Sunday which gave the performance an even more nostalgic feel. As the kids danced and clapped to all of the band’s songs, everyone’s energy was elevated. When finishing the show out with Home, the band came to the audience to see if anyone wanted to tell a story during the song’s lull. A girl, probably around 10-years old, raised her hand and sang a show-stopping version of the first few versus of the song, which blew singer Jade Castrinos’s mind. After that, Castrinos and co-singer Alex Ebert (aka Edward Sharpe), brought on stage a woman who told a story about working for Jade’s dad and Jade singing Rent as a little girl—ending the show on a very sentimental, teary note.
Everyone erupted in applause, but after the show some naysayers could be heard hating on the little girl who sang Home, saying that James Franco was behind her filming, and obviously had set up the whole scenario for his upcoming movie on Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. But those who believe in the magic of the circus still think that the girl was sincerely picked at random, and she sure had the spirit in her song to prove it.
Photos by Annie Lesser