To begin, if you haven't listened to Shilpa Ray and Her Happy Hookers yet, please click here now. Whatever I say here will not do her justice.

The Bell House was surprisingly dead, even for a Wednesday. It was obvious that many didn't know what they were missing.

Openers, The Depreciation Guild warmed the room with dreamy shoegaze.  You can check out a free album download by going to their website.

Shilpa took the stage with a bang.  The first thing that you will notice is that she is a tiny girl seconds later you will learn that her voice is enormous.  

The tight melange group opened with the track "Beating St Louis"  from their current debut EP A Fish Hook An Open Eye.  The tiny crowd, looked on in awe.  They knew that this was a special evening.  

It wasn't long before the entire room was bouncing along with Shilpa.  Her stage antics were amazing to watch as she worked her way through songs from A Fish Hook An Open Eye and the disbanded Beat The Devil .  Shilpa moved through these songs succinctly and steadily but never calmly.  Even as she fought a slight cold, she managed to muster more energy than most artists do on their best nights. Between her waving hand on the harmonium to nearly swallowing her microphone to spitting on the crowd, everything on the stage was authentic. 

Yes, their are obvious inspirations and influences and most stem from the classic rock genre, yet somehow she remains modern.  Patti Smith, Janis Joplin, and Jim Morrison come to mind as comparisons, but Shilpa is herself.  And she owns her music.   Go see her live ASAP before she's huge! She will be at Piano's next month, May 13, 20 and 27.

Oh and be prepared to turn to the person next to you and say, "I can't believe that voice comes from that girl."