Had the privilege of attending an event last night that was billed as a concert but that was more like being in the company of your goofiest, most infinitely talented best friend providing one of the most entertaining evenings of your life. In fact, I would go so far as to say it’s the best concert I’ve been to in about the last 16 years, or since the last time I saw the formidable Bonnie Raitt live.
Bonnie is one of those people who has no age. The woman is amazing. Her energy and humour are totally infectious. I first became acquainted with her music just after Nick of Time came out, at which time I was living in Germany, and to my absolute delight she turned up there, giving a concert in Dusseldorf. That was just when Luck of the Draw was being released, which quickly became my favourite record at the time.
I introduced EPI to Bonnie Raitt when we met and while he didn’t take to her instantly, he came to respect her as a guitarist. However, when I finally got around to playing him some of her old bluesy stuff, he was smitten, and when we arrived in Toronto and saw that she was going to be playing at the Hummingbird – just blocks from where we are staying – there was no question that we had to attend.
We had the most amazing seats – in fact the guy at the box office could hardly believe that such fabulous tickets had opened up just as we arrived. Row D, dead centre, with no one in front of us. And what a fabulous, intimate, fun show. She’s such a charismatic performer, clearly loves the stage, and acted like she was at a big party with 3,000 of her closest friends. Not being a weepy sort, I nonetheless was deeply moved when she sang Nick of Time – so poignant and true. The acoustic blues numbers were phenomenal, and when she rocked she totally rocked. Her band, too, was utterly fantastic.
What a great concert. I just did.not.want.it.to.end. I tend to be pretty discerning when it comes to performances, and despite Bonnie’s forgetting of lyrics [that she turned into a big joke – especially during Papa Come Quick], messing up her set list [a bigger joke] and various technical hiccups, I couldn’t fault the show. Now if someone could only persuade her to come play for us in Niceland, like, once a week or so, that would be great.