Emmylou Harris, Carré, Amsterdam 27 September 2008

I am exceptionally lucky in that I have seen almost all my favourite artists in concert, many on more than one occasion. I have a list of a few who I have been hoping to see for years now and Emmylou was high up near the top. She came last year with Mark Knopfler to perform in Ahoy in Rotterdam but I choose not to go as Ahoy is just way too big, particularly for this type of music.

The Carré however really is a perfect venue to see Emmylou so it was definitely worth the wait. This old circus theatre still has an air of grandeur about it while remaining small enough to have really intimacy. The vast selection of songs she performed was a testament to her years in the business and her ability to evolve and retain her individual charm.  She perfectly mixed her old and new material in a way that left neither out of place on the set list. Never being a big fan off country her unique voice ensured that she never lost me for a minute, even on some of the more twee numbers. My attention breaking only for Broken Man’s Lament from the new album which irritates me endlessly (and it always seems to go on for about an hour).

Her voice got better and stronger as the evening went on. It’s a voice so distinctive and haunting that at times I got chills to think she was there right in front of me creating these sounds. As I was leaving I overheard a man telling his wife that he thought she was much better last time. I had to smile to myself wondering what that concert must have been like – I certainly didn’t have much to complain about at this one. Emmylou was nothing short of stunning.


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