Midnight at the Liberty

I’ve been listening to this song by the 5 Chinese Brothers (no relation to China) over and over this week. The lyrics tell a good story, even though I can’t identify a single one of the cultural references. Maybe it’s not my culture, or maybe I’m not supposed to. But I’m hooked on the song.

This is now the third 5 Chinese Brothers song I’ve fallen in love with. Time to buy some albums, I think.

“Midnight at the Liberty” by the 5 Chinese Brothers (1.3 MB)

Update: A few days after making this post, I was talking to my mom on the phone and she asked me what I would like for my birthday. I was about to say “nothing really” when I remembered this band. Well, my birthday has come and gone and now I’m the proud owner of their album Let’s Kill Saturday Night, which features this song plus two others that I really like. Thanks, mom! 🙂

2 replies on “Midnight at the Liberty”

I like it. I used to listen to this kinda ‘alternative country’ all the time in college (physics, represent). I’m not really up on who’s hot these days, but Wilco is one band that evolved from the flock. Back then (circa ’96) the Jayhawks, Sonvolt, The Old ’97s and Whiskeytown were pretty popular. Btw, I’ve been inspired by your running log (not to mention your Canadianess, 30ness and being-in-China-ness). Think I’m gonna post one of my own. (Remember me? You commented on my Star Wars rant a few months back.)

Hello mad philosopher!

I was surfing around seeing if anyone remembered my old band and I stumbled onto your blog. Thanks for your kind words about Midnight at the Liberty!

For your own edification: the Liberty was a movie theater in suburban Baltimore, where I grew up. They showed midnight movies to keep us kids out of trouble, but they did an awful job of it. The movies were always too quiet and sometimes they weren’t even entirely on the screen! They’d hire tons of security just in case we got “out of hand”–laughable, since we were just a bunch of harmless middle-class suburban kids–which created a really weird, tense vibe. It was the 70s, so of course we were all high. Does that about cover it? Oh yeah, Jimi Plays Berkeley is a Jimi Hendrix concert flick.

No one in 5 Chinese Brothers was Chinese. We took our name from our favorite children’s book, and it was a mistake. People either expected a band of Chinese musicians or an REM cover band (they have a song called “Seven Chinese Brothers”) and we were neither. Some people were offended, which was the worst, and of course no offense was meant so we were mortified.

Anyway, thanks again for your review. Keep supporting music you love. Musicians really appreciate it!

Tom Meltzer

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