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Damien Rice Live at the Uptown

Posted by Maureen Tuesday, May 15, 2007

A few years ago, several of my friends saw Damien Rice live at Liberty Hall in Lawrence. These same friends had seen U2 live once or twice and had compared the power and emotion of Damien's live performance to that of U2. So when I rolled into Uptown Theatre on Sunday night to see Rice for the first time, one can imagine my standards were pretty high (considering I still can't hardly watch more than one song on a live U2 dvd because I get too overwhelmed with the nostalgia...ha).
In spite of my excessive expectations, I really enjoyed the show. For one, I appreciated that Mr. Rice started at 730pm sharp--no opening act, and we were out of there by 930. Now that is the kind of show us oldies are actually willing to stand up for instead of crashing the balcony seats.
His performance of "Me, my yoke, and I" was mysteriously powerful, and of course the classics like "Blower's Daughter" and "Cannonball" countered all my disappointed expectations. To close the set, he stepped out from behind the mic, unplugged his guitar, and just belted "Cannonball," letting the Uptown acoustics carry his voice. It was one of the most beautiful things I've ever heard. To close the encore, he came out with a glass of wine and a cigarette, and lip-synced to his own recording of "Cheers Darlin" while acting drunk. That was one of the most bizarre things I've ever seen live, but enjoyed every minute of it.
Of course, his former female vocalist, Lisa Hannigan, was earnestly missed. A lot of reviewers said Rice's show was just as good without her, but her voice (or the lack thereof) haunted me throughout the entire show.
Nonetheless, for years I've aspired to see Damien Rice live, so now I can scratch him off my list (and can go back to focusing on catching that darned Patty Griffin....she keeps slipping right through my fingers. . ).

Additionally, I decided to add some links to my blog page, so to the right you can check out some good blogs, books, and music that I'm into right now. Be sure to go visit Michelle Bridges' blog and leave her tons of comments to encourage her to keep it up!

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