by Anura Guruge
>> Ronan Tynan.
>> Glenn Miller Orchestra.
>> Jonathan Edwards & Marina Evans.
>> “Best of Broadway”.
>> John Gorka & Cliff Eberhardt.
>> “Aztec, Two-Step”.
>> “Yellow Brick Road” — Brilliant!
>> Gordon Lightfoot Concert
++++ Search on ‘Great Waters’ for many other related posts >>>>
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Attribution will be enforced with gusto.
Last week with Ronan Tynan the catchwords were ‘soaring’ and strident. This week, with the “Stalwarts of Country Swing“, it was all sizzling strings, breathless vocals and lots of passion and fervor. Elana’s violin, played as a fiddle with mesmerizing vigor tempered with virtuosity, took you places you would not imagine that such a small and delicate instrument would be capable of going. The big (and we later found out to our delight and amazement, totally ‘collapsible’) bass, on the other hand, was lovingly whipped — and that is the only way to describe it — on occasion to produce a ‘thump’ that you had to experience to appreciate. It was quite the performance. Wasn’t so much a wall of sound, but waves upon waves, non-stop and intertwined, of notes all, despite what sometimes was meant to come across as frantic strumming, very pleasing to the ear and compelling to the heart. They, having been doing it for 18 years, really do know what they are doing, what works and what the audience wants. Talent like that leaves me, one with no talents at all, in utter awe, often, last night, with my mouth agape. It was, yet again, an honor and rare privilege to be there. And what nice people. Salt of the earth from Austin, TX.
As is my wont (being the closet introvert that I am) I ‘work the crowd‘ and ‘press the flesh‘. So I got to learn some about the audience. During the first half I sat behind two identical looking brothers (though not twins), accountants both, from Norway (yes, like next door to Sweden (rather than in Maine)), who were seeing ‘Cowtown’ for the 4th night in a row! I was impressed with that. Then in the second half Elana told all of us that it was the Norwegian brothers’ 74th, yes, you heard that correct, 74th, time seeing ‘Cowtown’ perform. The group had (and I am not sure whether I would really call it ‘kindly’) given them one of their T-shirts each when they attended their 60th concert. Reminded me of all those T-shirt jokes. “We went to 60 of their concerts and all they gave us was this lousy T-shirt.” Well, Elana did promise that they would get something else when they came to the 75th concert. But, DAMN! Last night was the last concert of what had been a 3-week tour. No more concerts till October. So the two brothers will have to wait awhile to make it 75. Kind of humbled me, which, in reality isn’t that hard to do. I used to be an unashamed “Steeleye Span” and “Lindisfarne” groupie. But, at most, I might have seen them, each, maybe 20 times, possibly a bit more. Definitely not 50 times and 74 blows my mind. I have seen the ‘Phantom’ around 7 times and I keep on joking that my goal is to see it at least 17 times — that number, somehow, stuck in my mind as how many time Princess Diana saw the show. BUT, 74? Just think of that. And they come over from Norway. 74.
But, they were NOT alone — though I didn’t meet anybody else who even came close to 74, let alone 47. There was a couple who had seen them the night before in Boothbay, Maine and came across to New Hampshire to see them again. So twice in two nights. I met two ‘older’ (meaning that they were older than I) couples, both ex-Mass., who had seen the group, in Mass. many years ago, 15 years ago in the case of one couple and 18 years for the other — and that had been in Somerville. They actually asked for a show of hands of those that had seen them before. Of the around 180 present about 40% had seen them before. That is quite the following and I can now understand and appreciate.
I was impressed. I was entertained. And I can honestly say that I was well and truly sated and it takes something special to sate me.