Saturday, July 28, 2018

Concert Review: Selwyn Birchwood at Kanza Hall

Four black musicians performed for 20 white people at the 1,000-capacity Kanza Hall on Friday.  I forked over $15 at the door to witness the debacle.  Selwyn Birchwood is one of handful of artists equipped to shake blues out of the doldrums.  The form has been stuck in a commercial and artistic rut for years.  The Floridian’s astute songs, sly guitar solos, powerful voice and uncommon band configuration- guitar, saxophone, bass and drums- were even more impressive at Kanza Hall than on his two albums for Alligator Records.  The snippet of a Fenton Robinson-style guitar solo I posted to Instagram reflects Birchwood’s sensitivity and restraint, rare qualities in a genre that too often rewards bluster.  Subtlety clearly wasn’t in demand on Friday.

(Original image by There Stands the Glass.)

No comments: