Friday, August 11, 2006

Bruce Cockburn at the Moore Theatre

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I had a lovely evening out at the Moore Theatre (corner of 2nd & Virginia), which hosted Canadian performing songwriter Bruce Cockburn and opener Sarah Harmer and their bands in concert. Bruce is a musician of immense talent and great heart, noted as a virtuoso guitarist, poetic lyricist, and a world traveler who regularly incorporates reportage, social concern, and spiritual longing into his art. He has toured the world over. Perhaps you've heard him in concert where you live. His live shows are fantastic. I've been very fortunate to live on the US west coast where Bruce tours regularly, but this was my first time hearing him play this 1400 seat venue which has, I'm glad to report, a great sound system. The house was full and the audience very receptive and appreciative. I got to visit a bit with fellow longtime Cockburn fan Daniel Keebler who is ranger at Mt. Rainier National Park . He has published Gavin's Woodpile, the Bruce Cockburn Newsletter, for many years. Sarah Harmer has a superb voice, and is an excellent songwriter and performer. She came out during Bruce's set to add gorgeous harmonies to "Waiting For a Miracle," a Cockburn song Jerry Garcia once covered. Her current self-penned repertoire is featuring roots and alt country style sounds. With that voice, though, she could sing in nearly any style. She was supported by a great band featuring a guitarist/mandolinist, a stand-up bass player, and a keyboardist/vocalist. Bruce's set featured excellent drummer Gary Craig and keyboardist/vocalist Julie Wolf (who I'm familiar with from the SF Bay Area and her tours with Ani DiFranco's band, but who studied at Cornish here in Seattle and worked in the jazz scene here for many years). I very much enjoyed both artist's sets.

Someone affiliated with the venue mentioned to me that when the Moore Theatre was built in 1907 it had separate entrances and seating for "colored" and "white" people. No trace of those segregated days is left except a stair/corridor that kind of goes nowhere. All has been remodeled a couple of times, leaving intact the theater's interior ornamental charms while providing comfortable seating and great sound.


anne said...

Glad you had a great evening. Sounds like you are a big fan of him =)

Scrubs & Shines said...

Im a big fan of bruce, since he started in Toronto, Ive seen at least 10 concerts over the years. an inspiration to me as to how I view the world. I painted an oil paining thats posted on my blog, "Another Art Infestation", come have a look see, cheers.