Birmingham, Alabama, Sept 12 2015.
I was fortunate to catch James McMurtry playing at Workplay Theatre. A really nice all-purpose, small venue – in a city that seems to be re-vitalising, after the decline of the iron and steel industry in the 1970s.
It was my first visit to the Deep South of USA, last year.
These are just a few shots of that concert:
James McMurtry is a story-teller. He is Texan, but he tells stories of ordinary people all over the country.
Stories of farmers, shop-keepers, fishermen, individuals, relationships, even the general plight of manufacturing industry in America. (Appropriate for Birmingham.) Like a good book, stories (and tunes) that you revisit time and again.
They used to call this Folk-singing. Nowadays they mostly call this folk-country-rock…. Americana.
McMurtry is just a keen observer of and subtle commentator on his own country.
He delivers on acoustic guitar or winds it up to rock tempos with a variety of electrics.
Not one to adopt the inflated stage persona, rather he conveys with wry wit & a low key touch of pathos.
The touring band was Daren Hess (drums), Ronnie Johnson (bass), Tim Holt (accordian/guitar).
Tim Easton opened with a one-man, energetic, guitar-driven set.
A video selection of James McMurtry: