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Sunday, January 23, 2011

I Worshipped at The Church of Rock & Roll: Amos Lee @ The Crystal Ballroom 1/21/11

Between this post and my last one: "Praise Be to The Concert God" I run the risk of over-using religious language.... Well, that's I risk I'm going to have to take, because I have come to believe that live music is indeed akin to a "religious experience." A musician has the ability to connect your soul to his, and you share a transcendent feeling....

I feel that way at every Amos Lee show, I've been to so many I've lost count. I have been to every formal performance in Portland, (and even a few radio sessions) ever since seeing him open for Bob Dylan in '05. However, Friday's show at The Crystal Ballroom was by-far the best.

Amos Lee's new album, "Mission Bell" will be released this Tuesday, the 25th. I believe it is his best offering yet, and its Gospel-infused songs certainly contributed to the jubilant Church-like atmosphere.

Friday's performance held particular significance for me personally. Weeks ago I posted a photo of Amos & myself on his Facebook page, with a caption asking him to please sing the Paul Simon songs he had sung at The  Brooklyn Academy of Music tribute show. On the night of the concert I ran into Amos's drummer, Freddie Berman, who recognized me from previous performances, he told me that he had seen the caption and would "put in a good word" to Amos.

Sure enough, the first song of the encore was a soul-stirringly beautiful version of "Peace Like a River" I hope from the bottom of my heart that he will record that song, along with "Homeward Bound." (The other song from the BAM tribute is "Nobody", and it is included on an I-Tunes exclusive EP.) It too is wonderful beyond description. Hearing the words of one hero in the mouth of another is truly something to behold.

The night was unforgettable, I will treasure it forever.

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