Back to full calendar Event Info Event Calendar Venue Info Info Tech Specs Promoter Info Box Office Private Events Shop Lola's Room Discover Art History Brewery Explore the Crystal Blocks Monday, May 13, 2019 True West Presents Kevin Morbywith Special Guest Sam Cohen 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show $18 advance, $20 day of show All ages welcome Share this event Add to Calendar Kevin Morby Kevin Morby, Oh My God With his four acclaimed solo albums and myriad records of various collaboration, Kevin Morby has become a true musical auteur. His singular vision, evocative lyrics, and aptitude for catchy, dense songwriting has placed him firmly among the ranks of modern icons like Bill Callahan, Kurt Vile, Sharon Van Etten, Will Oldham, and Jeff Tweedy. Each Morby record possesses its own unique persona and explores intriguing themes and fertile terrain through shifting, focused textures and dexterous, dedicated skill. And now, with the lavish, resplendent, career-best double LP Oh My God, Morby delivers a grandiose director’s cut of his biggest statement to date, epic in scope as well as sound. Throughout his past work, Morby has noticed the ubiquity of an apparent religious theme. Though not identifying as “religious”, Morby—the globetrotting son of Kansas City who has made music while living on both coasts before recently returning to his Midwestern stomping grounds—recognizes in himself a somewhat spiritual being with a secular attitude towards the soulful. And so, in an effort to tackle that notion head-on and once-and-for-all, he sat down in his form of church—on planes and in beds—and wrote what would become his first true concept album. “This one feels full circle, my most realized record yet,” says Morby. “It’s a cohesive piece; all the songs fit under the umbrella of this weird religious theme. I was able to write and record the album I wanted to make. It’s one of those marks of a life: this is why I slept on floors for seven years. I’ve now gotten the keys to my own little kingdom, and I’m devoting so much of my life to music that I just want to keep it interesting.” Morby admits he has viewed the world through a skewed spiritual lens his entire life. As a kid he was told by his working-class parents that he was a Methodist, though the family rarely if ever made good on that claim come Sunday, and he saw fire-and-brimstone billboards on Kansas roadways with the aim of scaring heathens straight. Despite his ignorance and indifference, religion seemed to be everywhere, and as Morby grew as a musician—playing bass for Woods, fronting The Babies, and with his solo career—he embraced its influence with his work. In 2016, on the heels of a trio of critically-acclaimed albums, he wrote the protest song “Beautiful Strangers” about the devastating world events of that year, and in it he inserted multiple “oh my god”s as pleas of desperation. The song became his most celebrated work to date and the phrase became a mantra for Morby, inspiring him to weave the exclamation conceptually into the fabric of an entire album. In effect, he sought to highlight how that immortal turn of phrase embodies so much of our relationship with the sacred and profane—how religion is all around us, always, and that by simply uttering an OMG we enforce its ubiquity and ability to endure while humanizing its reach. “Religion is around all of us,” Morby says. “It’s a universal language and there is profound beauty in it. I’ve found it a useful tool within songwriting, as it’s something everyone can relate to on some level. There are religious themes or imagery in a lot of what I’ve done, so I wanted to get all of that out and speak only that language for a whole record. It’s not a born-again thing; it’s more that ‘oh my god’ is such a profound statement we all use multiple times a day and means so many different things. It’s not about an actual god but a perceived one, and it’s an outsider’s view of the human experience in terms of religion.” In January 2017, preceding the release of his fourth solo record City Music, Morby went into producer Sam Cohen’s Brooklyn studio for four days to record a handful of material written with his usual folk-meets-lo-fi-electric-guitar sound in mind. Cohen, with whom Morby made his 2016 breakthrough Singing Saw, had started recording the new songs with a business-as-usual mentality when on the third day he was struck with an idea: Rather than create what was becoming Singing Saw: Part 2, what if they stripped everything back and instead of the entire Morby rock palette used only a few colors at a time, focusing on Morby as hyper-literate singer instead of guitar-slinging troubadour? “Sam suggested that we make songs that sound like sonic pop-art that only have a few colors, like a Keith Haring piece,” Morby says. “My other records had tons of colors, so we decided to keep this stark, like a painting that’s black-and-white with one vibrant blue. We went back to the drawing board and thought about what we wanted to do conceptually across an entire piece. And for the first time I could do exactly what I wanted, as I had time and the ability to get everything precise. Sam encouraged me to let my lyrics sit on top of everything else, and that discovery and the confidence that came with making my fifth record helped me realize the new direction was exactly where we needed to be. We opened it up completely and set out to make something in its own universe.” Over the remaining day-and-a-half, Morby and Cohen recorded new versions of four songs—“Oh My God,” “No Halo,” “Savannah,” and “Nothing Sacred/All Things Wild,” the latter becoming a mission statement for the new sound and featuring Morby singing, Cohen playing a subtle organ part, and Morby’s drummer Nick Kinsey on congas. Breaking the songs down into their separate parts served Morby’s religious theme perfectly, as did the blueprint of “Beautiful Strangers,” a song that would serve as a skeleton key of sorts for everything that was to come. Over the course of 2017, he wrote an album’s worth of songs modeled after “Strangers” while on tour. As Morby jetted around the world playing shows, he came to realize that all that air travel was making its way into his music, too. He had always used his time in the sky to work on songs and listen to demos he had recorded, but he began noticing an aero-dynamic emerging in his lyrics as well. “Flying can be something of a religious experience for many people, myself included,” he says. “It’s unnatural, and it can be so scary being that high up—a few big bumps can even make an atheist pray. You’re anxious as you take off and thinking about death, then you level off and suddenly you’re in this kingdom above the clouds. There’s a holy feeling, and a big part of the record’s theme is being above the weather. The first song, ‘Oh My God,’ starts with chaotic hammering on a piano and then smooths out with a choir singing; it’s meant to mimic how I feel on an airplane.” All that flying also meant Morby was sleeping in a new place each night, a situation he also learned to embrace creatively—most of Oh My God’s songs were written from beds. Morby typically starts and ends each day by playing guitar or writing songs while under the covers, a practice that mimics prayer in myriad ways. “There’s something sacred about working from bed,” he says. “It’s where you make love and where you dream. I always write just before I go to sleep and right when I wake up. It’s where I can access that feeling of dreams. Any bed is always a sanctuary, but my bed at home is the Holy Grail.” Morby sought to represent these sentiments visually for the release of Oh My God. In addition to using a portrait of him reclining in his own fluffy-white bed at home in Kansas City on the album cover, he also worked with the filmmaker Chris Good on a short film to accompany the release. The film stars Morby as he wanders through a dream-like series of encounters—on planes, in cars, in a diner, at home in his back yard—and presents a Gondry-esque vision of the album and its holy mood. Meanwhile, in January of 2018, a full year after their initial session, Morby and Cohen returned to the studio together to complete the album’s recording. They fine-tuned the rollicking opening trio—starting with the title track, then first single “No Halo,” and “Nothing Sacred/All is Wild”— and played with various styles and techniques throughout. The ethereal “Congratulations” was written in a dream, a first for Morby. (“Someone had been singing the chorus to me over and over, and I woke up in the morning and walked to my piano and wrote it then and there.”) “Seven Devils” features a ripping guitar solo by Morby’s bandmate Meg Duffy that evokes a distorted hellfire, and “Piss River” is a stream-of-consciousness, poetic and profound tune featuring harp played by Morby’s friend Mary Lattimore while the singer has a call-and-response conversation with himself. Saxophone duties throughout the record were handled largely by Cochemea Gastelum, and a seven-member choir appears as well. Morby directed Cohen in the creation of a track called “Storm (Beneath the Weather),” a 90-second ambient instrumental piece made with synthesizers to mimic what it can feel like under the clouds. “Above the weather, you’re safe and nothing can get to you; it’s heavenly, like you achieved peace,” Morby says. “Below that you’re subject to the insanity of humanity, or Mother Nature. I wanted a weird, atonal sound on the record to represent a storm, which feels in-line with the pop-art idea.” “Hail Mary” may be the album’s grandest moment and is recognizable as one of the few guitar-driven songs that hearkens back to his previous work. Its heavy scope is still apparent despite the fact that Morby and Cohen edited it down from its original 15-minute-long, multiple-verse version into a concise five minutes and three verses. And as the final song, “O Behold,” makes a familiar, just-in-case farewell from an airplane seat (“If the plane’s on fire/know I love you”), the listener can sense the credits rolling as the clouds begin to break, grips loosen, and the kingdom comes into view. At 14 tracks and four sides, Oh My God is an actualized concept album with a contemporary feel that is sure to find itself on the shelf next to classic double-LPs like Blonde on Blonde, Exile on Main St, London Calling, and Zen Arcade with its maker planted firmly in a window seat at the front of the plane. Morby has graduated from the DIY beginnings and warehouse shows of his early days to become an admired, impassioned auteur who retains firm control of his vision as his stages only continue to grow. “At the end of the day,” says Morby, “the only thing I don’t want is to be bored. If someone wants to get in my face about writing a non-religious religious record? Thank god. That’s all I gotta say.” Website:http://www.kevinmorby.com/Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/kevinrobertmorby/ Upcoming Events Similar Events Upcoming Events at Crystal Ballroom Video Dance Attack: Prince Tribute Friday, April 26 Crystal Ballroom I Prevail Wednesday, May 1 Crystal Ballroom Songs & Stories: An Evening with Art Alexakis of Everclear Thursday, May 2 Crystal Ballroom 80s Video Dance Attack benefiting Avi Haviv and the Cascadia Montessori School Friday, May 3 Crystal Ballroom The Melvins Saturday, May 4 Crystal Ballroom "When Beers and Bands Collide" Saturday, May 4 Crystal Ballroom Dance Gavin Dance Thursday, May 9 Crystal Ballroom Animals As Leaders Friday, May 10 Crystal Ballroom Similar Events at Crystal Ballroom Video Dance Attack: Prince Tribute Friday, April 26 Crystal Ballroom I Prevail Wednesday, May 1 Crystal Ballroom Songs & Stories: An Evening with Art Alexakis of Everclear Thursday, May 2 Crystal Ballroom 80s Video Dance Attack benefiting Avi Haviv and the Cascadia Montessori School Friday, May 3 Crystal Ballroom The Melvins Saturday, May 4 Crystal Ballroom "When Beers and Bands Collide" Saturday, May 4 Crystal Ballroom Dance Gavin Dance Thursday, May 9 Crystal Ballroom Animals As Leaders Friday, May 10 Crystal Ballroom Video Dance Attack: Prince Tribute Friday, April 26 8 p.m. 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom I Prevail Wednesday, May 1 6:30 p.m. doors, 7:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Songs & Stories: An Evening with Art Alexakis of Everclear Thursday, May 2 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom 80s Video Dance Attack benefiting Avi Haviv and the Cascadia Montessori School Friday, May 3 8 pm 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom The Melvins"Sabertooth Micro Fest" Saturday, May 4 3 p.m. beer tasting and vendor gazing, 4:30 p.m. music 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom "When Beers and Bands Collide" Sabertooth Collaboration Beer Tasting Saturday, May 4 3 p.m. beer tasting and vendor gazing, 4:30 p.m. music 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom Showbox Presents Dance Gavin Dance Thursday, May 9 5 p.m. doors, 6:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Thrasher and McMenamins Present Animals As Leaders Friday, May 10 7 p.m. doors, 8:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom True West Presents Kevin Morby Monday, May 13 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Hatebreed 25th year anniversary Friday, May 17 5:30 p.m. doors, 6:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Monqui and McMenamins present Jenny Lewis (sold out) SoldOut Wednesday, May 22 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Live Nation presents Elle King: Shake the Spirit Tour Thursday, May 23 8 p.m. doors, 9 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Monqui Presents The Specials Friday, May 24 7:30 p.m. doors, 9 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Mike Thrasher Presents Gogol Bordello Saturday, May 25 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom Death Sunday, May 26 8 p.m. doors, 9 p.m. show with a movie earlier at 4:30 p.m. followed by a Q&A at 6 p.m. All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Double Tee & Dead Nation Present Nav Wednesday, May 29 7 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Living Prism Presents RAW Friday, May 31 7:45 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom Heart 2 Heart Sunday, June 2 2 p.m. doors, 3 p.m. show 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom Benefit For Flora feat. The Decemberists, Blind Pilot & more Monday, June 3 6:30 pm doors, 7:30 pm show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Avatar Tuesday, June 4 5:30 p.m. doors, 7 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Mike Thrasher Presents Chromeo Thursday, June 6 6:30pm doors, 8pm show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom AEG/Madison House present An evening with Amanda Palmer SoldOut Saturday, June 8 6 p.m. doors, 7 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom AEG/Madison House Present An evening with Amanda Palmer Sunday, June 9 6:00 p.m. doors, 7 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom L7 Friday, June 14 7:30 p.m. doors, 9 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Gaylabration Presents Gaylabration 2019! Saturday, June 15 9 p.m. doors, 9 p.m. show 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom Showbox Presents Machine Gun Kelly Wednesday, June 26 6:30 p.m. Doors, 8 p.m. Show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Ones To Watch & The Noise present Chase Atlantic Tuesday, July 2 6:30 pm doors, 8 pm show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Mike Thrasher Presents Reel Big Fish & Bowling For Soup Monday, July 22 6 p.m. doors, 7:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom True West Presents The Psychedelic Furs James Thursday, August 1 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Showbox Presents Streetlight Manifesto Friday, August 2 6 p.m. doors, 7:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom The Shakti Journal Presents Shakti Speak Easy Thursday, August 22 4:30 p.m. doors, 5 p.m. VIP Dinner, 7 p.m. General Admission All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Monqui and McMenamins present Japanese Breakfast Friday, August 23 8 p.m. doors, 9 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom True West Presents The Mountain Goats Monday, September 9 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Double Tee & Dead Nation Present The Growlers On SaleApr 2610 AM Thursday, October 3 6:30 pm doors, 8 pm show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom True West Presents Oh Sees Friday, October 4 6:30 p.m. doors, 8 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Monqui Presents Tinariwen Wednesday, October 9 7 p.m. doors, 8:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Monqui Presents Lukas Graham Wednesday, October 23 7 p.m. doors, 8:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Monqui Presents Big Thief Thursday, October 24 7 p.m. doors, 8:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Sasha Scarlett Presents Portland Erotic Ball Saturday, October 26 8 p.m. doors, 9 p.m. show 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom Monqui Presents Mt. Joy Wednesday, November 6 7 p.m. doors, 8:30 p.m. show All ages welcome at Crystal Ballroom Suicide Girls: Blackheart Burlesque Saturday, November 9 7 p.m. VIP M&G, 8 p.m. doors, 9 p.m show 21 and over at Crystal Ballroom Info Tech Specs Promoter Info Box Office Private Events Shop The Crystal Ballroom 1332 W. Burnside Portland OR 97209 (503) 225-0047 Contact us Where On Any Night, Anything Can Happen!! In these walls... The historic Crystal Ballroom -- now over a century old -- is one of those rare concert halls that can point to a proud, diverse history while also laying claim to an ongoing musical legacy. Every time you enter this majestic ballroom, let your imagination sense the tremors resonating from a century's worth of gatherings, and realize that you are joining a thriving, generations-long procession of show-goers. Welcome! ♦ Looking for your Crystal Ballroom Passport Stamps? Crystal Ballroom, Lola’s Room & Crystal Brewery Tour occurs daily at 2 p.m. - meet at Ringlers Pub (street level below the Crystal Ballroom.) The tour takes about half an hour to complete. Any questions may be directed to the Crystal box office, 503-225-0047. Stamps for the Crystal Ballroom and Lola’s Room are also available when you see a show – ticketed or free – in either venue. Please note: Due to private events, concert setup needs and brewers’ schedules, not all spaces are guaranteed to be available to tour daily, but our staff will give it our best shot and show you the spaces that we can. Tech Specs Floor and stage plan PDF download Lighting diagram PDF download Sound manifest Crystal: PDF download Lola's Room: PDF download Technical and logistical packet For Crystal Ballroom & Lola's Room PDF download Ballroom height and beam-to-beam dimensions 16' 11" from beam to floor 19' 11" from floor to ceiling 14' 6" in between beams Promoter Info Rental Expenses To Outside Promoters RENT VARIES, PLEASE CONTACT A BOOKING COORDINATOR $900 SOUND & LIGHTS $365 PRODUCTION MANAGER ($54.75/hr OT) $255 STAGE MANAGER ($38.32/hr OT) $255 FOH TECHNICIAN ($38.32/hr OT) $255 MONITOR ENGINEER ($38.32/hr OT) $255 LIGHTING DIRECTOR ($38.32/hr OT) $150 HOSPITALITY ($20/hr OT) [mileage is 33 cents per mile] $1,000* SECURITY ($100/hr OT) $100 BOX OFFICE STAFF ($20/hr OT) $200 ADMINISTRATION FEE $ ---- PARKING HOODS $ ---- CHAIR RENTAL ($2 per chair) $ ---- ADVERTISING $500 PIPE AND DRAPE/BARRICADE $175 STAGEHANDS $ ---- BOX OFFICE CREDIT CARD FEE (3% of Box Credit Card Sales) * Security cost is an estimate. Additional security may be required depending on the nature of the event. Overtime: All expenses incurred by the Crystal Ballroom for Catering, Advertising, requested stagehands, overtime (anything over 10 hours), backline, barricade, risers, etc. will be added to total rental rate. Deposits: A non-refundable 50% room deposit and a $2,500 'untenured promoter fee' (UPF) is due immediately in order to secure the room. If ticket sales exceed 500 the 'UPF' will be refunded; if ticket sales are below 500 the room keeps the entire $2,500 to make up for less than 1/3 capacity and corresponding lack of sales. The 'UPF' will not be refunded if the event cancels within 60 days of the event. Settlement: Venue will pay renter with a company check at the immediate conclusion of door sales. Venue will not provide any cash at settlement. Late Night Fee: There is a $1,000/hour additional fee for any events after 3 a.m. We may also require additional security for events of that nature. Merchandise: Merch rate is 20% they sell. We can provide a seller with advance notice and will keep 30% of sales. The outside promoter will receive no revenue from the merchandise as that is the prerogative of the house. House keeps a percentage of all transactions. Tickets: All tickets must be placed through the venue onto the Cascade Tickets system. All comps, label buys, and holds must be approved by the venue. There is a $2/ticket venue fee at the Box Office. Refunds: All refunds will be directed to the outside promoter. In the absence of an outside promoter representative, the venue shall use its own discretion regarding refunds and all refunds shall be deducted from settlement. Insurance and Licenses: Renter must provide liability insurance not less than $1,000,000 for any single occurrence naming McMenamins Inc. d.b.a. Crystal Ballroom as additionally insured. Tickets will not be placed on sale until binder is received. Promoter is responsible for all ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC fees. Production Advance: Performers or their representative must contact venue's production manager 5 days prior to the event in order to advance production needs, otherwise runner will arrive at 6 p.m. and all rider items/requests will be greatly limited if provided at all. Layout: The Crystal Ballroom is located on the 3rd floor. The first floor is Ringlers Restaurant and the 2nd floor is Lola's Room, both of which may have a public or private event simultaneously with the Crystal. Cancellation/Postponement: The contract covers the specified event for the specified date. No substitution will be accepted for a cancellation. If the event is postponed the room deposit will be transferred to the date of the new event but the $2,500 'UPF' will be applied toward the date of the originally scheduled show and an additional $2,500 will be required in order to reschedule. Capacity: The venue's capacity is 1500*. All artist and promoter guests and comps will be deducted from sellable. Comp and guest space must be reserved in advance. House is entitled to 20 guests. House guests will not effect sellable. Promoter must have guest list to house no later than 2 hours prior to doors. VIP cap is 25. * Seated capacity is 850. Seated shows must be 21 and over. There is a $2/chair rental fee. Venue and corporate sponsor banners may be present during event. Marketing your event at the Crystal Ballroom Please contact Mike Walker for information about marketing your event through McMenamins resources. Box Office Please note! Both the Crystal Ballroom and Lola's Room specialize in open-floor shows with a very limited amount of seats. The rare seated events will be clearly denoted as such, within the event description on our schedule page. Box Office Information Tickets for all McMenamins shows are ticketed by Cascade Tickets, and may be purchased at the Crystal box office (located under the Crystal's awning) and McMenamins Edgefield, by phone at 1-855-CAS-TIXX, or by clicking the "Buy Tickets" link located at the event listing on our schedules. Tickets bought directly at the Crystal box office or any of our four ticket outlets will only incur a $1 facility charge. (Please note! Tickets to Edgefield Concerts on the Lawn will incur additional service fees.) Crystal Ballroom Box Office Hours Daily, 11:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. The box office is open later on nights when there is a performance. The box office accepts cash, VISA, MasterCard, American Express and DiscoverCard. Will Call Will call is located at the box office. Refunds All ticket purchases are non-refundable. Parking There are three pay lots nearby, and street parking is available. Accessibility Those with disabilities may call (503 225 0047) or email in advance to arrange early admittance. There is an elevator located in the lobby. Hold your Private Event at Crystal Ballroom Weddings Meetings Social Events The Crystal Ballroom is a truly awe-inspiring venue with its vaulted ceilings, grand chandeliers, giant wallscapes and famous "floating" dance floor. Accommodating groups from 100 to 1000 people, this 7,500-square-foot space includes access to the Ballroom's classic corner stage, floor-to-ceiling windows, swooping balcony, and full bar service. Tucked in the Crystal’s second story is Lola’s Room accommodating events of up to 200 guests. Lola’s comes with a handsome fully stocked bar, original artwork, and a floating dance floor all it’s own. For overnight accommodations, our Crystal Hotel is just a block away! Contact our sales team to inquire or book your event. Get Started Here Art History Brewery Artwork plays an important role in the character of McMenamins locations throughout Oregon and Washington. We believe art makes life richer and more enjoyable. So, you'll often find paintings covering our walls, ceilings doors, overhead pipes, and equipment -- works as diverse and entertaining as our places for family and friends. Many artists have contributed to this vast variety of delightful eye candy. Jump in and enjoy some now! Explore the Crystal Blocks Our Crystal Hotel and legendary Crystal Ballroom are just across the street from each other, each offering their own unique spaces for live music, Northwest style fare and McMenamins hand crafted beverages. Explore these properties and all they have to offer. Crystal Ballroom Property Crystal Hotel Property Movie Showtimes Select Showtime Select Showtime Property Name Property Name Property Name Property Name Property Name Property Name Property Name Choose date above and click showtimes on the right for online ticket purchases... All seats are reserved. Doors open 45 minutes before each showing for food and beverage service. We recommend arriving 45 minutes early if you would like to order food to enjoy with your movie. Minors (under 21) are allowed only with parent or guardian 21 and over. Finding Dory (TBC) Running time 1:43 Buy Tickets 12:00 pm 4:00 pm 7:00 pm 10:00 pm Please be patient while we process your order.