The Northstar Session Opens for Matthew Sweet at the Belly Up

The Northstar Session
Belly Up – San Diego, CA

Matthew Szlachetka Guitar and Vocals
Kane McGee Drums, Vocals, Keys, Percussion
Dave Basaraba Keys, Vocals, Melodica
Chris Torres Bass and Vocals

The Northstar Session Belly Up - San Diego, CA 8/25/2008


This Belly Up show was a first for both The Northstar Session and The Dead Hub. Prior to the show Matt and I were on the phone discussing and hyping each other up about this particular venue. We were told The Belly Up is the best place to hear live music in San Diego, and since neither of us had stepped foot in The Belly Up before, we were exited to experience it. The Belly Up is, as everyone had said, one of the best places to hear music. The setup is really convenient and easy because they have different levels to see the show, meaning less visual obstructions. Most of the space is standing room only except near the back and side of the stages that have tables and chairs.

The Northstar Session Belly Up - San Diego, CA 8/25/2008The Northstar Session took the stage to a healthy crowd. As I stood in the crowd with the video camera I had people asking me questions about these guys. They are lucky I actually know the band and have that information at my disposal in my brain. On that note, here is a little history and an introduction of the band.

The Backstory (Short Version):

The Northstar Session was just Matt in 2002. It wasn’t until Matt moved from the East Coast to California and met Kane when the North Star Session became a band. They are now a four piece band with lots of talent on board including Dave Basaraba (keyboard) who has toured for the likes of Meredith Brooks, Becca, and Paul Freeman.

Currently, you can hear their music in the following movies:

Numb (Matthew Perry, Kevin Pollak, Helen Shaver, Mary Steenburgen, William B. Davis)

It’s Alive (Bijou Phillips, James Murray, Raphael Coleman)

Repo (Jason Mewes, Ben Gourley, Izabella Miko, Lindsey McKeon, Patrick Muldoon, Frankie Jay Allison, Sunny Maybrey)

When the four guys took the stage they were in the zone. Kane started off on guitar and lead vocals. By the song “Easier” he was at his drum kit singing lead. He took on lead vocals several more times for this set. When Kane’s not taking on the lead vocals, he’s singing the backing vocals for the song while drumming.

Matt encouraged crowd participation and rallied the crowd to the stage. Matt sang my personal favorite “Lovely Life” long with another favorite, “Poldy and Molly”.

The set list for the night included:

All At Once
Straight To You
Poldy And Molly
Lovely Life
Turn You Around
Worlds Apart
Crazy Jade > Mean Mr. Mustard > Crazy Jade
All Roads

They had a guest guitar player, Billy Clements, step in for the last two songs of the night. He drew much praise from the audience with his guitar solos and chops.

These guys are writers and session players; a well oiled machine. Kane and Matt have an undeniable chemistry on and off stage. The Northstar Session made a great impression on the crowd and as Matthew Sweet finished his first song of the night, many were commenting on the Nothstar Session blowing Matthew Sweet out of the water. They won over a new set of fans on that lovely, lovely Monday night.

Check out there latest release New Prehistoric Times on or it’s available at CD Baby.

Video clips coming soon..

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  1. […] out these guys when you can! Check out our review from their Belly Up show in San Diego opening for Matthew Sweet. They completely stole the […]

  2. […] When They Played the Belly Up opening for Matthew Sweet and Stole the Night! addthis_url = ‘’; addthis_title = ‘The+Northstar+Session+Nominated+for+LA+Band+Of+The+Month+in+The+Deli+Magazine’; addthis_pub = ”; Posted in Music News, jessica emmerich | Leave a Comment […]

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