Concert review | Lucinda Williams: Singer-songwriter weaves … – The Columbus Dispatch

Posted: August 12, 2017 at 10:43 am


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Curtis Schieber For The Columbus Dispatch

Lucinda Williamss songs are so incisive and well-crafted they nearly sing themselves, reaching emotional undercurrents apart from their delivery. As her set in the Valley Dale Ballroom on Tuesday night illustrated, though, the most moving these days are those with specific personal connections. When she appeared to relish reaching into those memories, she elevated an evening filled with terrific songs to one punctuated by magic moments.

Lake Charles was one of those, a song about a deceased former lover that nonetheless gained weight from a story Williams told about her dad meeting Hank Williams Sr. Apparently, Hank told scholarly poet Miller Williams he had a beer drinking soul.

On her 2014 album, Down Where The Spirit Meets The Bone, Williams turned one of her fathers poems into the song Compassion, using one of its lines for the albums title. Tuesday nights concert opened with Protection, from that collection and killer lines such as, Livin in a world full of endless troubles/Livin in a world where darkness doubles.

When the singer revisited the highway that drew a line through her early years with her newest release, last years The Ghosts Of Highway 20, the results were stark, vivid, and sometimes bluntly honest. Her delivery of the title track last night was not as desolate but at least as personal. Even before she followed it with the story about her dad and Hank Williams, it was clear that it was informed by her family history.

The singers set drew heavily from her 1998 album Car Wheels On A Gravel Road, a high-water mark in her songwriting that drew more on her own experiences than her later focus on family.

Though Lake Charles comes from that collection, it was framed differently Tuesday night. Songs such as Right In Time and Drunken Angel were welcome old friends but seemed to ride on their own merits, Williams delivering them with her trademark, deceptive slackness but adding little special emotion.

Williams was backed by Buick 6, a bluesy trio that supported subtly when needed but stepped out enough to make the audience wonder who they were. They are drummer Butch Norton, guitarist Stuart Mathis and bassist David Sutton.

Angela Perley & The Howlin Moons opened with a smoking set of countrified rock.

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Concert review | Lucinda Williams: Singer-songwriter weaves ... - The Columbus Dispatch

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August 12th, 2017 at 10:43 am