What a great night at Massey Hall. The opening number from Carrie Chesnutt and the WBR band was an absolute show stopper. The six amazing vocalists that followed were all great, but I don't there was anything that could overshadow Carrie's performance of "Dr Feelgood" (which she only recently learned). I hope that cut makes it onto the CBC Broadcast (Dec 30th on "Sounds like Canada" with Shelagh Rogers and starting Jan 3 (??) on Saturday Night Blues). It was pretty long number...but if all Canada could hear Carrie doing that tune, they would be wondering out loud why she wasn't one of the featured vocalists and why we don't see her touring across the country as a headliner. Just one more thing about Carrie...the show opened with a wailing sax solo but you couldn't see who was playing because she was in the dark. It was Carrie on soprano sax and when the lights came up on her people were doubly amazed because she looked fantastic. Then she handed off the horn to Sarah and went into this sultry, searing vocal...well, it was something to behold. You had to feel for Roxanne Potvin following that production number with her pared-down blues sound even though her new material is getting away from the blues. My seatmate John Valenteyn said he could hear Colin Linden's influence - he's been producing her new CD set for release in February. Shakura S'Aida, Suzie McNeil, Lee Aaron all gave great performances and Salome Bey was very entertaining - her daughter Saida on stage throughout with her and sounding great herself. What a night!
The whole evening was quite a feast for the eyes, too. Here's a link to some
great pics from Bill King: