Milam’s Memphis Sound

Posted on February 23, 2014

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By Kendra Lyons

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Last night, Chris Milam kicked off his 901 Series at Winter Arts in Germantown. It was a concert experience unlike any I have been to before. The evening was low key, and celebrated local music and art in a very cool way.

Winter Arts is a clean and classic venue. Hardwood floors, white walls, and bright lighting made it the perfect space for an intimate concert. The event was hosted by the Artworks Foundation.

Artwork by local artists, Xander Batey and Hope Hudson, was posted on the walls including sketches, paintings, and drawings which were up for sale. A cartoonish crescent moon was hanging directly behind Milam during the performance, which he later explained was a gift given to him by local artist, Amy Hartelust as a reference to the countless times he has used the word “moon” in his lyrics.

Members of the audience were invited to make themselves at home. While some settled into the chairs that were arranged in front of the small stage, others set up lawn chairs and utilized coolers in the back to keep their wine and beer cold during the show.

Milam is a poet. He writes all of his own music and his lyrics will bring you back to your hometown, first love, first car, high school, best friends, and above all else, your home. “I’m fifty miles from Memphis and no closer to you,” he crooned during a duet with fellow local artist, Myla Smith.

Milam was determined to cater to his fan base in multiple areas in Memphis. While the first show was in Germantown, Milam will hit Midtown and Downtown as well before the end of the 901 Series. He was joined by several family members, friends, and even teachers who had him as a student at Houston High School and came out to support him. “The roads to these songs are the roads just outside these doors,” he observed before beginning to play.

Milam’s demeanor when he took the stage was as casual as they come. He walked out of the side door wearing skinny jeans, black converse, and a checkered button down. With his signature slicked back hair and acoustic guitar, it was like there was no audience. He was all about the music and nothing else.

“I’m going to play a set. And then there will be an intermission….and then I’ll play another set,” he explained simply with a smile.

Milam didn’t let distractions get in the way. At one point, he pulled out a harmonica and when it wasn’t cooperating on the attachment he had, he dropped it on the floor and continued. The audience laughed but I don’t think he did it for comedic relief. He did it because it was interfering with his mission to showcase his work in a no-fuss manner that the audience could connect with. Milam’s dedication to making the evening about creating a one-of-a-kind musical experience for the audience and sharing his stories with us was original and extremely refreshing.

If you missed out on the first event, Milam’s coming to Midtown and Downtown! His next show is on May 9th Downtown.

Contact Chris Milam: Website | Facebook| @chrismilammusic

Kendra Lyons is a senior Political Science major at Rhodes College.

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Posted in: Lifestyle