Smile Politely

The legend of Patty Griffin

Wednesday night at the Canopy Club should be one of those events you remember for years to come — whenever your mind wanders to live music, finely-crafted songs and well-honed musicianship. Patty Griffin is coming to town, and that is a very big deal.

You have likely heard her songs covered by Jessica Simpson, Kelly Clarkson, Linda Ronstadt, Bette Midler, or the Dixie Chicks. Solomon Burke, the undisputed king of rock-n-soul, recorded her song, “Up to the Mountain”, and Grey’s Anatomy used her music in their forth season. She has been writing songs that get into your head and take your mind on a road trip through vast expanses of personal experience, and she has been doing so for over 25 years.

Having been signed by A&M Records in the mid-1990’s, her first release for the label was produced by none other than Niles Rodgers, who by that time had produced recordings by The B-52’s, David Bowie, Jeff Beck, Grace Jones, Mick Jagger, and dozens of other equally notable artists. The stripped down production perfectly highlights her considerable singing and song-writing abilities. Nothing on this album distracts from the beauty of a first release from song-crafter extraordinaire.

Her latest release, Silver Bell, is a collection of songs originally recorded over 10 years ago that have been masterfully remixed by Glyn Johns, one of the best, and most prolific, music producers of the last 40 years. Part sweetly sculpted songs of life and love and part Nashville, or, more accurately, Austin tinged rock-and-roll, Patty Griffin continues to capture the imagination with her style and wit.

Opening for Griffin will be Anais Mitchell, a singer-songwriter in the finest folk tradition. Her strong lyrics feel as if they have been part of the traditional folk songbook forever, while her soaring voice captivates.

Slide on over to The Canopy Club on Wednesday night and see what the fuss is about. Show is at 7:30 p.m. and tickets are $20. Check out the Canopy’s site for all the information about the show.

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