Kris Delmhorst in Bellingham Washington
I was so lucky to catch Kris Delmhorst just south of the border here in the Pacific Northwest recently. Our proximity to Seattle makes it a nice joy that many of some of the United States great singer songwriters make a stop over in Bellingham Washington at a pub called the Green Frog.
I spotted her tour date just by chance thanks to social media. It is times like these (spring and summer tour schedule season) that I wish I had more than 24 hours in a day so that I could keep my calendar updated with ALL of the great shows in our area. Kris’s show was one of those shows that I was able to by chance catch and enjoy at the Green Frog.
I like to think the Green Frog is the Tractor Tavern of north of Seattle but with way better food. If you are familiar with music in the Pacific Northwest you know what I mean when I reference the Tractor Tavern. Their assorted grilled cheese sandwiches are mind blowing. The tavern is unassuming and the bar is all cash so heads up bring your real currency to this place.Coincidently enough I was introduced to Kris Delmhorst’s music at the Tractor while seeing Catie Curtis. She opened for her there back in probably 1996. But I digress. This is all about the venue, which I do encourage you to patronize but I do want to tell you about the show and Kris’s music.
Kris’s show was fantastic. Her new Album, Blood test, is her first new original composition since 2008’s critically acclaimed album SHOTGUN SINGER. It is a joy to listen to.
This album reminded me of how beautifully composed her music is. She writes just as easily about love about loss about happiness and about how life changes us. I appreciate this aspect of her writing. Her lyrics are matter of fact and they cut to the chase and remind you of that one special moment in time and make you sit back and realize that all of the moments in our lives no matter how small and minute become a beautiful mosaic of our lives. Her music takes you down those pathways with each chord and you walk away from her show feeling good and having a reverence for those moments of your own life. That to me is a key to a great singer songwriter and Kris for me is one of those people.
She played beautifully and effortlessly with her co band mate Austin Nevins for the tour. Austin is a fabulous guitarist and matched beautifully and effortlessly to Kris’s guitar and vocals. It was just the two of them on stage playing together for maybe the first or second time as they mentioned that night. You would never have known that because they meshed together so well and seemed to know each other’s styles perfectly
Her track list followed her new release Blood test track for track and took you on that journey with her of what must have inspired this latest CD. I found something to love about each and every track she played and followed along on the journey with anticipation. The one diversion she did take from the current album set list was to play a track off of her “Cars “ album from 2011, which is her version of music that Ric Ocasek and The Cars made hits. She played an intense yet sweet version of “Magic. “
Delmhorst acknowledges that her latest work is “an acknowledgement of the weary work of an intentioned life – and the new American dream of presence and perspective in a frenetic time. “ She conveys that message beautifully on Blood test. With each track you learn more about her path as of late and you also can feel her music as it weaves in and out of your own experiences. This is what she does so effortlessly and perfect.
Kris is a delight to catch live so please go out and hear some live music. Why not? When artists such as these are working hard to help us stop and take notice of not just their art and their craft but the art and the craft that is your own life. Go out and purchase her album. It can be found on Itunes but better yet see her live and purchase it there! But if you forgot to bring cash you can get it here too on her website.