Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Lucinda Williams Rocks Tulsa (with a little help from her friends)

Lucinda Williams rocked out in Tulsa's classic Cain's Ballroom on May Day 2007. Her show was opened by Anne McCue, a relatively unknown artist from Sidney, Australia who played only a handful of tunes, but did come back out and join Lucinda and the band for a rousing rendition of "You Took My Joy (and I Want it Back)." Lucinda introduced this song by proclaiming to an audience that was predisposed to love her, "Don't let anyone take away your joy, not even the president..." In fact, it was Lucinda's fantastic rapport with an audience that came to hear her unique meld of blues/country/rock 'n roll music and superb songwriting that made the night feel special. Lucinda opened her show with a set of country songs played as an homage to the ghosts of Cain's Ballroom, including a Ralph Stanley inspired hoe-down.

As Lucinda chatted with the crowd of about 2000 adoring fans, she mentioned that she had a few friends in the audience and proceeded to call a couple of them up on stage. So Tulsa was treated to two old-time true American blues tunes with legendary blues guitarist D.C. Minner (hailing from Rentiesville, OK), who joined Lucinda and company onstage along with D.C.'s wife Selby who was positively channeling the late great Janis Joplin and who strapped on a bass guitar for one of the tunes. The crowd responded warmly to the mini-reunion of sorts that was witnessed and much appreciated by all, then it was back to the business of rocking out the Cain's...

A task that Ms. Williams and her able band took quite seriously. After going through her country set, Lucinda launched into some rock 'n roll favorites, including a wonderful version of the song "Overtime" written by Williams, but made famous by Willie Nelson. I believe that the band even covered an old Jethro Tull tune. Williams and her band concluded with the aforementioned "You Took My Joy." For the encore (and yes, Lucinda and the boyz did another set for an encore), Lucinda opened her final set with a crowd-requested version of "Metal Firecracker" followed by a new song about a honey bee (wink wink) and she closed out the show with a cover of the Bobbie Gentry classic "Ode to Billy Joe."

All in all, it was a fabulous evening with loads of great, and most importantly, fun music. Tulsa loves Lucinda and Lucinda dubbed the Tulsa crowd the "best audience of the tour," so the feeling must be mutual. You're welcome anytime here in Green Country, Lucinda, don't stay away long.

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