Live Review: Yola @ 9:30 Club — 1/10/20

Lincoln Center - Americanafest - Patty  Griffin and Yola
Yola sings at Americanafest on Aug. 10, 2019. (Photo by Steven Pisano)

Several years ago, country-soul songwriter Yola was testing a Christmas gift that involved a live flame. Unbeknownst to her, the accelerant she used leaked onto her dress, and, when she went to light it, she caught fire.

To her surprise, Yola responded by breaking into laughter, as she realized she was bizarrely happy at this turn of events. That says a lot about where she was at the time, Yola told a sold-out 9:30 Club audience recently.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Last Train Home @ The Birchmere — 1/3/20

eric-brace-peter-cooper
Eric Brace, Thomm Jutz, and Peter Cooper (Photo by John Partipilo)

Last Train Home came together in DC in the late ‘90s, led by Eric Brace, who was then a reporter at the Washington Post. When the band took off, Eric left the Post to become a full-time musician.

After a hiatus, Last Train Home came home to The Birchmere recently.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Hank Williams Tribute @ The Birchmere — 12/29/19

hank williams
Hank Williams’ star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (Photo by allison_dc)

The end of the year brings the annual Hank Williams tribute show to The Birchmere. In the 23rd annual occurrence of the show recently, many performers returned from last year: Cathy Fink and Marcy Marxer, Pete and Maura Kennedy, bassist Mark Schatz, and fiddler Patrick McAvinue.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Sunny Sweeney @ City Winery — 12/15/19

Sunny
Sunny Sweeney (Photo courtesy True Grit Management)

Sunny Sweeney brought her Dysfunctional Family Christmas show to DC recently, with frequent partner Brennen Leigh joining her at City Winery. Accompanied by Sunny’s guitarist Harley, the pair traded off songs and stories, making for a highly entertaining evening.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Robert Earl Keen @ Lincoln Theatre — 12/6/19

RobertEarlKeen_Lincoln
Robert Earl Keen performs at the Lincoln Theatre on Dec. 6, 2019. (Photo by Ari Strauss)

“If you want Christmas music,” Robert Earl Keen told the Lincoln Theater recently, “go to the mall.” REK’s Countdown to Christmas Tour steered clear of holiday music until the encore, when he played the fan-favorite “Merry Christmas from the Family,” an ode to the dysfunction and craziness of the holidays.

Continue Reading

Live Review: Tanya Tucker @ The Birchmere — 12/1/19

tanay-tucker-new
Tanya Tucker (Photo courtesy Adkins Publicity)

When Tanya Tucker got to “Bring My Flowers Now” at The Birchmere recently, her band left the stage, leaving just Tanya and her keyboard player. In her deep, rich voice, Tanya sang of her desire to receive flowers — and whatever else — “while I’m livin,” rather than at her funeral.

Tanya told the audience that the gorgeous song had been gestating for decades. When she finished singing it, she received a standing ovation.

Continue Reading