The Contented Cow is a British-style pub located on Division Street in downtown Northfield. It’s full of energetic culture, trendy ambience and stellar musical performances. The Cow has an all-around feel-good atmosphere – from the cozy interior to the vibrant patio (not to mention the vintage popcorn machine providing free – yes, free – popcorn to any and all customers). It’s a mix of classic European pub and modern American bar. With a regular following of college students and local residents alike, there isn’t much that this venue hasn’t mastered in the entertainment realm.
Enter Nick Love ’19: one of St. Olaf College’s very own who is making his mark on the music industry with classic and contemporary music renditions. Twenty-one years old and studying Music Education, Love is a full-time student as well as an aspiring musician. He brought his talents to The Cow this Saturday, Sept. 23, where he performed from 8:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. He sang a variety of songs, including covers and originals, and awed the crowd with his musical ability. Standing behind his keyboard on the patio that was full of chatter and decorated with strung lights, Love’s demeanor and musical contribution not only fit right in but added to the liveliness.
Love was a solid performer, engaging the crowd throughout each song and drawing the listeners in with good humour and frequent jokes.
“This doesn’t really work on the piano, but I’m going to play it,” he said before beginning the song “Say it Ain’t So” by Weezer.
He earned encouraging whoops from the crowd as well as various song requests. One of these requests was Justin Bieber’s “Sorry,” which he graciously complied to for a brief moment before fading the song out to more good-hearted laughter from the listeners.
Love then went on to play “Creep” by Radiohead. Near the middle of the song, he paused playing and said into the mic, “If you thought I was going to do the really high note, I wasn’t going to do that,” which brought about further laughter, adding to the already good-natured tone. He followed this with a series of impressive scats, and then finished up the song with a strong delivery of vocals.
Among the other songs he performed was the classic “She’s Got a Way” by Billy Joel. Love captured everyone’s attention during this ballad with his smooth delivery and expert playing of the keys. When the song ended, an appreciative applause sounded, and he thanked the crowd.
With each song Love played, he never failed to engage, and he did a superb job of entertaining with a balance of amazing musical talent and equally compelling comedy.
The future is looking bright for this talented St. Olaf junior. With his thorough study of Music Education and his pursuance of a music career, this performance is surely one of many to come.