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Live Review: Bonnie Raitt in Hummingbird Centre, Toronto – July 10, 2006

on July 11, 2006 No comments
— Toronto Sun


storage.canoe.comTORONTO – Some musicians get tense and grumpy when things go awry during their shows; other, wiser ones use minor screw-ups as a way to establish a closer rapport with the audience.

Bonnie Raitt is obviously one of the latter.

Her show at the Hummingbird Centre last night was plagued with minor glitches like forgotten verses, spur-of-the-moment set list changes and non-functioning microphones — she called it “wild-card night.” But Raitt turned every potential problem into something to laugh about, and managed to make performing at the cavernous Hummingbird seem like playing a small club filled with friends. “We’re going straight to Vegas with this show,” she joked at one point, and indeed the show had a relaxed, spontaneous feel that was the polar opposite of a slick, Vegas-style revue.

Opening with the Junior Walker classic I’m A Road Runner, Raitt and her veteran band — guitarist George Marinelli, keyboardist Jon Cleary, bassist Hutch Hutchinson and drummer Ricky Fataar — played a mixture of old acoustic blues chestnuts and blues-rock songs from her 18 albums, with special emphasis on her latest one, Souls Alike. The new album’s Necessary Mercenary featured a verse sung by the multitalented Cleary, while the suitably swampy blues number God Was In The Water was dedicated to “all the people in Louisiana and Mississippi who still need our help,” I Don’t Want Anything To Change was a sad country song with tinkly piano, and I Will Not Be Broken a defiant manifesto in the face of the sorrow of losing both her parents in the past couple of years.

Eventually, Raitt and Co. reached back to her breakthrough 1989 album Nick Of Time for the title track, dedicated to her parents and her niece, and I Will Not Be Denied. Then they switched to acoustic instruments for old songs like Papa Come Quick, Love Me Like A Man and the Sippie Wallace classic Woman Be Wise.

Raitt doesn’t seem to have aged a day since Nick Of Time came out, while her appealingly husky voice is as strong as ever. And her sense of humour hasn’t disappeared with age. She apologized for the audience having to choose between her concert and Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young’s across town, praising Young’s “badass” qualities but claiming that “my audience is more likely to get laid” before launching into Longing In Their Hearts.

Still, the show’s high point was Raitt’s biggest hit, Something To Talk About, featuring an apparently impromptu appearance by its author, Shirley Eikhard — even though Eikhard had to start her verse over when it became clear that her mic wasn’t working. Somehow, it all just made the performance seem more spontaneous and fun.




Source: © Copyright The Toronto Sun

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Over the span of her career, Bonnie has had the opportunity to collaborate with many incredible artists. Listen to some of these tunes on her Duets and Collaborations playlist on Spotify here: ... See MoreSee Less

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Singer Bonnie Raitt honours songwriter Shirley Eikhard for ‘Something to Talk About’ ... See MoreSee Less

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We are rocked to the core to hear of the passing of our dear friend, bandmate and musical genius, Mike Finnigan. He fought his long illness with the same fearlessness and ferocity he brought to every part of his life. Our deepest condolences go out to Candy, Kelly, Bridget and all his family.

Mike was one of the most powerful, virtuosic soul/gospel/blues singers and Hammond B3 players you’ll ever be blessed to hear. Respected and emulated by musicians the world over, his legacy of staggering
performances across his 60+ years career will stand the test of time. He stopped our show nearly every night. There was simply no one like him.

He was whipsmart, incredibly articulate and funny as hell. He was as devoted to his beloved family and friends as he was to helping so many struggling to get and stay sober. He and his wife Candy were instrumental in my own sobriety and I will be forever grateful.

Rest in peace, dear Mike. I know you’ll be shaking that Heavenly Choir to new heights as only you can do.

Here’s a clip from our 2013 Slipstream tour, where he tore up the place every night with Ray Charles’ iconic “I’ve Got News for You.”
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2 months ago
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