27 April – Cutting it a bit fine to see anyone on April but I managed to squeeze in two shows in four days at the end of the month. This was the first of them, Ryan Adams supported by Jason Isbell at Sheffield City Hall.
Isbell is a former member of Drive-By Truckers, leaving in 2007. Tonight he plays a half hour or so of top quality songs.
I like Ryan Adams a lot but I prefer his stuff with a band. This time round he’s touring solo, supporting his latest album, Ashes & Fire. It’s a very good show and he makes the large hall seem like a small intimate room. His strength is the quality of his songs and his ability to draw his audience in. My highlights are My Winding Wheel and New York, New York.
Ryan Adams Setlist: Oh My Sweet Carolina; Ashes & Fire; If I Am A Stranger; Dirty Rain; My Winding Wheel; The Rescue Blues; Please Do Not Let Me Go; Do I Wait; Firecracker; Everybody Knows; Sweet Lil’ Gal (23rd/1st); Why Do They Leave?; English Girls Approximately; Chains Of Love; 16 Days; Mr. Cat; New York, New York; Lucky Now; The End; Come Pick Me Up
30 April – Yet another trip to my favourite Leeds venue, The Brudenell Social Club, for a show arranged by my favourite promoters, the Hee Haw Sessions – The Simone Felice Group. The GLW has come along as she’s a big fan of Simone Felice.
The support is Simi Stone, formerly of Simone’s last band, The Duke And The King. She performs a short but excellent set with highlights being a version of Neil Young’s Birds, The Duke And The King’s No Easy Way Out and Take Me With You, a lament for her father.
Simi doesn’t have much of a break before she’s back on stage as part of the five piece Simone Felice Group. They open with an excellent version of New York Times before going through a setlist that includes a fine balance of songs from his new album and throughout his career as well as some well-chosen covers – Helpless and Knocking On Heaven’s Door. I’m particularly pleased to hear Summer Morning Rain; If You Ever Get Famous; Union Street; One More American Song and Radio Song.
It’s always good to see Simone and hopefully it won’t be too long a wait until the next time.