Monday, June 2, 2008

rave reviews

This is an article from the Buffalo News....

Concert review: Terri Clark breaks the mold

Terri Clark is a typical country music star in some ways and an atypical one in others. Country music award shows always seem to unveil a veritable plethora of good-looking females warbling melodies of love, heartache and good times, but few of them have the kind of instrumental chops that put them on an equal musical plane with their backup musicians.

Her show Thursday night proved that Clark not only sings a good story line, she plays guitar with considerable skill. She doesn’t flick the plectrum over the strings as stunningly as Justin Ostrander, her new lead player, or Kevin Post, her longtime pedal steel and slide guitarist, but Clark plays more than well enough to justify her solo spotlights.

She also takes care of business in other time-honored ways.

The best country music concerts usually feature good tunes, good musicians and a well-turned phrase or two from the star(s) thanking fans for their support. This shout-out to the folks who buy the music is a key to understanding why some country music artists have careers that outlast their impact on the charts.

The basic elements of this relationship between singer and fan includes a show of humility combined with an obligatory affirmation of shared values. Terri Clark has the patter down and genuinely seems to mean it, interacting with an audience that appreciates her down-home sense of humor and knows the words to darn near every song she sang at Thursday night’s show. It helps that most of Clark’s songs have catchy musical hooks and straightforward lyrics geared towards showcasing her polished vocal chops along with her guitar skills.

The bulk of her band has been with Clark during the past thirteen years of touring and their musical familiarity with their employer and with each other has paid dividends. In addition to Ostrander and Post, Clark’s most outstanding backup musician was fiddler Jenne Fleenor, but the whole thing would have fallen apart if they didn’t have a rhythm section that was so simpatico. Drummer Chuck Fields and bassist Paul Chapman were locked into each other’s pulse and provided a platform for the rest of the musicians to take off from.

The set list featured some of Clark’s biggest hits from past years, including “When Boy Meets Girl,” “Better Things To Do,” “No Fear” and “In My Next Life,” all of which garnered considerable applause from an audience committed to Clark’s vision. From a musical standpoint, her strongest, most affecting performance of the entire evening might have been the solo spot when all of her musicians walked off stage and she ripped through a bluesy, riff-heavy version of “Gypsy Boots.”


Anne said...

I am so beyond impressed. I think I'll clip this and go up to random people and force them to read it and then shout hysterically (while pointing) "That guy, that one, I am friends with his wife!!" And then they will be impressed too! Talk to you soon!

Amy said...

That is so amazing!!!!!!! Didn't we all know it all along? Glad he's getting some recognition.

Miss you!