WESTBURY, INDIANAPOLIS, NYC, NJ & PHILADELPHIA
WE SAW JOHN PRINE ABOUT 5 TIMES NOW BUT RECENTLY IT SEEMS HE ALWAYS DOES THE SAME SET & WHEN WE SAW HIM IN INDIANAPOLIS THAT WAS THE LAST TIME HE HAD HIS FULL BAND WITH HIM. WE WANT TO BE
JOHN PRINE GROUPIES AND TRAVEL AROUND THE COUNTRY TO SEE HIM BUT WE ARE GETTING BORED WITH THE SAME SETS. WE SAW HIM IN NYC WITH IRIS DEMENT. AND THEN IN JERSEY HE WAS ALONE. I READ SEVERAL RECENT 2002 REVIEWS AND THE SONG ORDER AND DETAILS OF THE PERFORMANCE ARE EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE LAST COUPLE WE'VE SEEN. EVEN THE STORIES JOHN TELLS ARE THE SAME. FORGET ABOUT YELLING OUT ASKING FOR YOUR FAVORITE SONG BECAUSE HE WILL NOT STRAY FROM THE PROGRAM. THIS IS NOT EXACTLY A REVIEW OF ONE CONCERT BUT A REVIEW OF THE RECENT 2-3 YEAR TOUR. MAYBE HE NEEDS A NEW ALBUM. WE STILL LOVE HIM.
Palace Theatre, Albany, NY
By: John J. Wood
Mrs. Jaimoe, given what John has gone through the last 5
years of his life, between his throat cancer and hip
replacement, let's be thankful John is out there playing
While I certainly agree with your sentiments about the
setlists -- and I'm a longtime Deadhead who has long been
used to seeing a handful of shows in a row without a single
repeat! -- I cannot complain about the quality of my last
2 shows (Albany, Athens). Most performing artists rarely
mix up their setlists, and it's only been in recent years
when the trend of changing setlists have occurred.
Even so, at least John changes a few tunes around. I
certainly would have liked to seen "Jesus The Missing Years"
and "You Got Gold" a la Portland, but you can only take
what happens on a given night. Still, Mrs. Jaimoe does
make a good point -- I know my experience in Athens was
enhanced by the rare "Mexican Home", for example.
GREAT show in Albany! Drove up from Poughkeepsie and met some friends Much
thanks to Mitch for the tix and after show pass. Second time meeting John
and still get goose bumps. Is that one word or two? I am as happy as a
gopher in soft dirt! Without a doubt the best performer/songwriter I have
ever seen or heard! I'll be looking for him to be in New York again soon.
In the meantime I'll be "trying to catch some fish, or save my
marriage, which ever comes first"!
By: Jim P
I couldn't believe I was seeing Prine again. This was the third concert I had been to. The first was back in 1972, Alice Tully Hall, NYC.
The concert was great...John's voice was amazingly great, in spite of the fact that his speaking voice seemed to get a bit more gravely. He sang so many songs...I was practically in a trance...his music puts me at ease and has sustained me through tough times a good part of my life...the concert rekindled my flames! thanks, John Prine!
Prine's melodies like an old friend
Date: Saturday April 20, 2002
By MICHAEL ECK, Special to the Times Union
First published: Sunday, April 21, 2002
ALBANY -- In 1971 John Prine quit his job as a Chicago postman, and with the encouragement of heavy friends like Paul Anka, Kris Kristofferson and Steve Goodman, cut an astonishing eponymous debut album that remains a classic to this day.
Prine sang nine of the thirteen songs from that album Saturday night at the Palace Theatre, and surveyed a brace of tunes from the rest of his 30 year career as well.
An enthusiastic crowd greeted each tune, especially numbers like "Angel from Montgomery'' and "Hello In There,'' like an old friend.
Prine and his supporting duo opened with "Spanish Pipedream's'' jaunty challenge to "blow up your TV'' and quickly rolled through similarly wry selections like "Six O'clock News,'' "Souvenirs,'' "Fish and Whistle'' and "Grandpa Was A Carpenter.''
Guitarist Jason Wilber and bassist Dave Jakes provided the right lift to Prine's simple, but effective melodies.
The poignant "Far From Me,'' which Prine said was inspired by his first broken heart, was one of the show's early highlights. He remembered getting three songs out of the breakup, and then quipped, "You can get a whole album out of a divorce, but it's an expensive album.''
That same ornery but compassionate wit marks Prine's songs. Few other writers (Loudon Wainwright and Bob Dylan, perhaps) can deliver emotional moments with seemingly comic words. In "Far,'' for example, he sums up the collapse of a relationship by observing, "Why we used to laugh together/and we'd dance to any old song/wall ya know, she still laughs with me/but she waits just a second too long.''
Prine offered a lengthy solo set in the middle of the program, giving Jakes and Wilber
what he called "the longest break in show business.'' When fans shouted out requests, he shot back, "I'm playing all the songs in alphabetical order so I don't forget the words.''
The audience would have helped him remember if he did; throughout the evening pockets of fans sang along to standards like "Dear Abby,'' "Donald and Lydia'' and the stark post-Vietnam ballad, "Sam Stone.''
When the band returned, Prine led them through stuff as varied as the goofy, rollicking "Sins of Memphisto'' and the dark, but rocking "Lake Marie.''
Prine, whose singing voice is in fine fettle despite a gravely speaking voice, strapped on an electric guitar for his first encore of "Ain't Hurtin' Nobody'' and invited opener Greg Trooper out to sing on his last, "Paradise.''
The Nashville-based Trooper warmed up the crowd with a well-received set that stressed his latest album, "Straight Down Rain.'' Trooper has a solo show June 21 at Valentine's.
When: 8 p.m. Saturday.
Where: Palace Theatre, 19 Clinton Ave., Albany
Length: John Prine: 2 hours, Greg Trooper: 40 minutes.
Last Time In Town: Prine played at the Troy Music Hall during his 1995 "Lost Dogs and Mixed Blessings'' tour.
Highlights: "Far From Me'' was just one of the great tunes culled from Prine's magnificent 1971 debut.
The crowd: A friendly group of slightly graying folks gathered to fill the first floor (and a little bit of the balcony) of the Palace.
By: Carol (bluumbrella)
Wonderful! Greg Trooper opened and did a great job-a very talented, funny, energetic guy. Then John came on, and he is truly magical. You immediately feel as if you know him
personally, and have known him forever. His voice seems to have recovered from the effects of cancer and is strong and clear, at least when he is singing. He is a wonderful showman, and his music makes you laugh and makes you cry, and sometimes both at the same time. You could hear people in the audience quietly singing along with nearly every song and EVERYBODY sang along with 'Illegal Smile'. He played for about 2 hours, but it was over much too soon.
By: John J. Wood
The set list:
1. Spanish Pipedream
2. Six O'clock News
4. Fish And Whistle
5. Grandpa Was A Carpenter
6. Far From Me
7. All The Best
8. Angel From Montgomery
9. Dear Abby *
10. Donald & Lydia *
11. Bottomless Lake *
12. The Other Side Of Town *
13. In Spite Of Ourselves *
14. Sam Stone $
15. Bear Creek Blues
16. The Sins Of Memphisto
17. Hello In There
18. Lake Marie
19. Ain't Hurtin' Nobody
20. Please Don't Bury Me
21. Illegal Smile
22. Paradise $
* - John solo
# - John solo for first verse, Dave Jacques & Jason Wilber return
$ - With Greg Trooper (who sang 2nd verse)
A very nice show in Albany on Saturday night, where the
playing was pretty crisp and the performances very sound
from start to finish. Personal highlights included a poignant
"Six O'clock News" that moved me to tears, a sweet "Far From
Me", a playful "Bottomless Lake", a sh*t-eatin' "Bear Creek",
a driving "Lake Marie" and a fun fun FUN "Illegal Smile."
The crowd was attentive and excellent. Also, "Souvenirs"
was done in a lower key by accident, as John has strapped on
a tuner to his guitar which was already set to the key of D.
John didn't realize until after the first verse, "Hey, this is supposed to be in D, isn't it?!" Like true pros, Jason and
Dave adjusted beautifully, and the lower key gave the song a
more rocking edge!
While the show was a bit shorter than my last (Athens, GA
last month), I would be a fool to complain because the
performances, heart and quality were all there! Thank you
to John, Jason, Dave and Greg Trooper for making a 2:15
drive from eastern Mass. most worthwhile.:-)