The Internet rumor mill churned full-throttle yesterday. After the Visual Arts Collective posted on Facebook that there would be “extra special friends” at the free Love As Laughter show, Jenny Lewis—formerly of Rilo Kiley and now of Jenny and Johnny—was tossed out as the likely surprise guest. But it only kept growing from there. People hinted that Pavement would be the extra super duper special surprise guest. And that Built to Spill’s Doug Martsch was going to play an afterparty DJ set. And even that Farmdog would perform.
Well, the buzz worked. The VAC was packed with folks eager to unravel the secret. Brian Mayer of Fauxbois kicked things off with an acoustic set, which went largely unnoticed by the chattering hordes. Then Lisa Simpson of Finn Riggins took the stage and performed solo, while the VAC crew bided their time waiting for Love As Laughter to show up. The crowd was still thick and eager by the time LAL’s van pulled into the parking lot and unloaded their gear, but after their extended fuzzed-out rock 'n' roll set, it started to become apparent that the rumors had, tragically, been only rumors.
But then it finally happened. At almost 1 a.m., Jenny Lewis finally showed up, teeny tiny in a tattered jean jacket with long redish locks. Though the crowd had thinned considerably, Jenny and boyfriend Johnathan Rice climbed up on stage with their band and rocked out solidly for six or so songs.
Here’s a video of Jenny and Johnny harmonizing on the ultra melodic, alt-country tinged track "New Yorker Cartoon" off their album I’m Having Fun Now.