Paul Thorn’s quiet, precise folk guitar playing, uncommonly pretty melodies and quiet, measured voice are often in stark contrast to his sharp sense of humor. His songs include “Honky Tonk Neanderthal,” which spoofs a backwoods redneck, and the unflinching, uptempo “I Don’t Like Half the Folks I Love.”
This musician from Tupelo, Miss., has sung the blues, poked fun at Garth Brooks and performed with New Orleans boogie pianist Marcia Ball. But Thorn is his own man. A lot of his songs are cheerily adult, ranging from “Viagra” to “I Guess I’ll Just Stay Married.” With their clever rhymes and nervy themes, they strike a chord with listeners. On Thorn’s YouTube videos, people write things like “It would be funny if it weren’t true.” And “I want to have a beer with this guy.” “Would love to hear him live.”
Buffalo gets the pleasure of hearing Thorn live at 7 p.m. Monday, when he swings by the Sportsmen’s Tavern (326 Amherst St.) on his “Too Blessed To Be Stressed” tour. Some of the new songs are sweeter than what Thorn’s fans are used to. “The songs on ‘Too Blessed to Be Stressed’ come from little nuggets of wisdom that friends and strangers alike have shared with me,” he told Rolling Stone. Still, Thorn’s trademark sharp humor is there, particularly in “I Backslide On Monday” and his entertaining rant “Mediocrity’s King.”
Tickets are $25. For information, call 874-7734.
– Mary Kunz Goldman