Good Grief – Dave Alvin and the Guilty Women live in Petaluma 10/2/09
The devastating news of Amy Farris’ tragic death had hardly sunk in as they took the stage in Petaluma’s historic Mystic Theater . The musicians were in obvious pain and many times had tears streaming down their faces. Yet as is often the case with tragic, unexplainable loss, they dug deep, tapped reserves of strength and put on a performance/wake/celebration that none of us will ever forget.
The majority of tunes were from the new Guilty Women CD – “Marie Marie”, “Downey Girl”, “Boss of the Blues” which Dave recorded earlier this year. The most touching tune was Christy McWilson’s deeply heartfelt vocal on “Potter’s Field”. There was complete silence as she sang the mournful lyrics.
Despite the sad circumstances, there was more than a few laughs and ferocious burn- down- the- house electric leads from Nina Gerber and Cindy Cashdollar on lap steel and dobro. Laurie Lewis played fiddle and mandolin and Susie Thompson sat in on fiddle and accordion.
I never had the chance to see Amy Farris play live. Yet seeing her black draped Mic stand with flowers and candles at the base, I really felt her presence in the room this night.
God speed Amy. May you find peace wherever you are.