Birmingham Town Hall
Gretchen was in fine voice last night and her band including husband Barry Walsh and Christine Bougiew on lap steel and drums were tremendous. It helped that the sound was crystal clear. The first set featured mainly songs from new album Blackbirds but also a wonderful version of Tom Russell’s Guadalupe which is a uniquely beautiful song which if anything Gretchen has made her own. The second set started with Gretchen alone at the piano for Independence Day and her voice soared. During this second set the highlights were five minutes and Idlewild from her last album and at the end a duet between her and Barry covering John Prine’s In spite of Ourselves which was a lovely end to a great night.
Perhaps only three quarters full which was a shame. Nonetheless they were hugely appreciative of the performance and the standing ovation at the end visibly moved Gretchen to tears. Oh and there was a marriage proposal. The lady said yes!! The guy must have been brave to do that publicly.
It made me think..
Nights like these are special but it is a tad annoying for me that the people of Birmingham don’t come out in larger numbers for a show of this quality. They don’t know what they are missing.