Call me Russ L

I’m Still In Love With You

Posted in Music by Russ L on 8 January, 2006

Originally posted on 3/7/5.

Adding to the list of Genuine Legends I Have Seen, on Thursday the 30th of June I went to witness Rev. Al Green. Originally I was supposed to be going with someone, but then they couldn’t, and then I had a spare ticket, so then my ol’ homegarliccrusher Prattman stepped into the breach. Then.

We met, and tarried for a while in the bar in the ICC (that’s the building that Birmingham’s Symphony Hall is enclosed within, for those of you unlucky enough to not be from the West Midlands), unaware that a support act (or artist) were (or was) performing in the actual venue. We didn’t hear a thing. When a large number of people simultaneously re-entered the bar, though, I can only assume that someone had just finished performing.

We went in, anyway, and found our seats up in the Gods. I can’t complain since it was sold out and I was lucky to get tickets at all, and we did have a good view even if it was very far away. God damn was the angle of incline steep, though. I’d only been there once before, where I was on the floor very near the stage. The top balcony is not recommended for those with vertigo.

Al took to the stage in The Greatest Suit In The World, and then went on to perform an hour and twenty minutes of everything you could ever want from an Al Green live set. If that doesn’t tell you how wonderful the concert was then you’re must be a touch on the strange side.

He comes across just like Bill Cosby when he talks between songs, too. That’s an added bonus. And his dancing is ace.

You can always do a bit of setlist quibbling, of course, but you have to acknowledge that ‘quibbling’ is all it is. I would’ve loved to see “Take Me To The River” live, for example, but there we go. “Let’s Stay Together” was unsurprisingly great. His version of “Amazing Grace” really was wonderful. “How Can You Mend A Broken Heart” was beautiful. I don’t know whether or not him confusing his band by spontaneously singing bits of other artiste’s songs and expecting them to keep up with him was genuine or scripted, but I’d really love to believe the latter. A really rocking “Love And Happiness” finished, with the brass section really giving it some.

Thoroughly enjoyable and, as I’ve said, everything you’d want from him. I was more than chuffed.

~ Russ L

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