April 9, 2011 | Posted By: Liem Nguyen
This was her night... The night when she and her friends, family, supporters, and fans celebrated the release of her first ever EP under the title "GO". She spent many months and long hours in the studio to produce and perfect her EP with the help of her supporters and fans by allowing them to pledge (donate) money through PledgeMusic to raise money for her EP as well as for charity. If you don't know who I'm talking about, you are missing out on a lot. Amanda Lee Vega, also known as Amanda Lee on-stage, is an independent singer/songwriter who's based in the Washington metropolitan area. She is the same performer that won second place in the first annual Kollaboration DC talent show last year. Kollaboration is a talent show known nationwide giving an opportunity for Asian American a chance for recognition for their great talents and skills in performing arts. Amanda's style of music and voice can be compared to the likes of Kina Grannis, Priscilla Ahn, and Brooke Fraser. So, if you know and like those musicians, you'll fall in love with Amanda's music.
I first met Amanda back in the fall of last year just a week before Kollaboration DC when she performed at Ebenezer's Coffeehouse in Washington DC with her friend Joanne Kim. I met Amanda through Joanne who is going out with Dan and Dan is a close family friend of my cousin Michael who lives in California but used to live in Virginia. My cousin came back home to DC to visit old friends, so I came out to hang out with him and his friends. It was at that meet-up that I met Joanne for the first time and first time in ages that I've seen Dan. We all talked and she learned that I loved listening to independent music and I learned Joanne was an independent singer/songwriter herself. She said she was performing and I should come out, which I did. Ever since seeing Amanda perform at the coffeehouse, I definitely loved her music and support her in any way I can. Being an independent artist has its perks for having the freedom of doing whatever you want, but getting your name out there is not as easy. Since her show at Ebenezer's, I have had the opportunity to see her perform numerous other times, and she does not disappoint.
I was really happy when she announced that she was working on an EP. When she opened a Pledge Music account, I jumped and pledged to pre-order a copy of the EP packaged with bonus disc that contained three unreleased demos. I swear that by the time all the signed pre-orders and packages were shipped, I was one of the last people to receive it. Everyone kept saying they received their copy while my mailbox was still empty haha! The wait was while worth it because the 4-track EP was amazing, Amanda remastered a couple of the tracks to make it more of a studio version.
Below is a picture of the EP and demo tracks right out the mailbox.
Amanda's EP release party took place at Habatat Galleries which is in the Tysons area. The original venue was supposed to be at Photoria in Annandale, but a few weeks before the show, it was changed. I personally thought the new location was nice. Amanda provided had snacks and wine at the show for people to munch on and drink while watching the show. The show itself was a small and intimate show which I always love. It allows the audience to be up and close with the performer. Seats were limited, so we got there early so we can get seats so we didn't have to stand. We got great seats near the front in the center which was nice since I was recording. It was also the first time recording video with a mono-pod, so I was excited to see how the videos turned out and if it was more stable. I was happy with the results. Joanne and Dan were manning the merchandise stand before and during the show. They were tempting me with discounts on all the merchandise. It was really tempting hahah! Before the show started, I was able to see Amanda and wished her luck. I also finally got introduced to Amanda's mom who actually works at the same company and office as my sister, such a small world.
Amanda's EP release show had two opening acts, Vince Lacsamana and April Lee. Vince came out first and performed three covers to his set and did a great job.
Below is his set-list video performances:
[ Prologue | Performance ] I'll Do Anything (Jason Mraz Cover)
[ Prologue | Performance ] Take It From Here/Best I Ever Had Mashup (J. Timberlake/Drake Cover)
[ Prologue | Performance ] Supernatural (Miguel Cover)
Following his performance was Amanda's little sister, April, took the stage. She came out and also did three cover. For the last two covers from her set, she had a friend come out to play the cello. Both of them together made a good duet.
Below are the videos from April's set-list:
Lastly, the main event of the show. Amanda comes out to perform her set. For the first time, she performs with a full band consisting of her husband Posido Vega and Chris Kennedy on guitar, and brother in-law Nucleo Vega on drums. Her set was magnificent. She performed all the songs from her EP as well as a few other originals with a couple of covers.
[ Prologue | Performance ] Beauty Of Failing
[ Prologue | Performance ] Empty
[ Prologue | Performance ] Better Me
[ Prologue | Performance ] Difficulty (KT Tunstall Cover)
[ Prologue | Performance ] Come Tell Me
[ Prologue | Performance ] Go
[ Prologue | Performance ] Letting Go
[ Prologue | Performance ] Why Do You Love Me Still
[ Prologue | Performance ] Solitude
[ Prologue ]
If you want to watch the show in its respective order, you can do so below.
Vincent Lacsamana [Part 1]
April Lee [Part 2]
Amanda Lee [Part 3]
The show about an hour long, but it was a memorable night for everyone. It was a unique show to be in where you would turn left or right and you may know someone. There was definitely a lot of family and friends there at the show to help support Amanda. After the show, Amanda heads over to the merchandise stand and meets everyone, gets things signed, and/or get pictures with her supporters. I stuck and waited for the line to die down a bit while mingle with Vince, April, Joanne, and Dan. After half an hour or so, I decided to finally go to the merchandise stand and congratulate Amanda on a successful show and to get a picture with her.
And that concludes the night and the show.. Hope you enjoyed the write up.
If you would like to see more information on the artists, you can go to their pages.
If you'd like to read up on more shows and see more pictures and videos I've taken at live shows, please be sure to visit http://shows.LiemPhoto.com.