Joe Henry rounded out our epic week of shows last Tuesday night at Headliners. Honestly, we probably would have sat this one out if we didn’t have the frequent flyer pass, but having it means there is no excuse not to go.
Accompanied with a clarinet/saxophone player, who just so happens to be his son Levon, Henry played to a mostly seated, but reasonably large group. His voice is very distinct- I can always pick out his songs on WFPK– and I actually find it to be soothing, and that is exactly what I got from the show. The very stripped setting allowed the audience to focus on Henry’s song writing and just pure musical talent.
The mostly older crowd was intensely engaged in each song as well as the background story on where it came from. As a very analytical person, it is so interesting to hear right brain people talk about their thought processes, especially artists during song writing, simply because that kind of emotion is so different from my own. Or at least how consciously aware they are about their feelings. And then having the ability to put those emotions in the words, with music… mind blowing. Joe Henry may be one of the best at this craft and it was inspiring to see him live.