Back when I was reading Trouser Press in college, there was a Punk band that advertised in the back pages called Someone and the Somethings, which seemed like a brilliant name at the time. Mark Silverman probably never heard of them, but he was similarly inspired when he christened his one-man-band project That 1 Guy. For anyone whose idea of a one-man-band is a guy with a harmonica rack, a thrift store guitar and cymbals strapped to his knees, the Las Vegas-based Silverman will update your thinking.
T1G’s tale begins with a Jazz musician father, enrollment in the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and steady work as a Bay Area Jazz bassist. A growing dissatisfaction with the limitations of his instrument led him to the invention of the Magic Pipe, a 7-foot-tall contraption made of gears, plumbing, strings and electronics that resembles a harp but puts out a wall of sound tangible enough to hang Muse and Who posters on.
After a couple of lively albums — 2000’s Songs in the Key of Beotch and 2006’s The Moon is Disgusting — and high-profile appearances at festivals like Australia’s Big Day Out and the U.K.’s Glastonbury, as well as touring with the ever-enigmatic Buckethead, T1G attempted to really extract the music in his head and realize it in the studio. He feels he did just that on last year’s Packs a Wallop, which shifts from thunderous Rock to humid Blues to thumping Electronica with Beck-ian flexibility.
There’s always been a comedic streak in T1G's stage presentation but he expanded that concept considerably when he began touring for Packs a Wallop, adding newly learned magic tricks into his already compelling stage repertoire.
The name on the marquee is That 1 Guy, but you’ll be getting a full band, a comedian, a magician, an inventor, a roadie and a bona fide Rock star for the price of admission. That might just be the best concert value of this season.
That 1 Guy plays the Southgate House March 19.