Ryman Auditorium Hosts Wilco for Two Emotional Shows
The Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee is one of the two greatest theatres in North America (Massey Hall in Toronto the other). The acoustics, the vibe, the location make any artist that performs there seem otherworldly. Wilco — seminal band and grandfathers of what some call “alt-country” — played two nights at the Ryman in late October and gave what could only be called a heartfelt, humbling sonic masterpiece.
As the house lights dimmed, Jeff Tweedy and crew entered the scene to a standing ovation from the sold-out crowd. You could see the smile on the band’s face as they hit the intro chords to “Forget the Flowers.” “Solitaire” and “Muzzle of Bees” melted so beautifully out of the monitors that you may have thought you were in church not at a Wilco concert. Tweedy sheepishly told the crowd, “I’m sure none of you heard us play like that already, even if you have followed us on the road.”
The show continued without much effect, blasting through “Hummingbird,” “Ashes of American Flags,” and ending with “Shot in the Arm.” But you didn’t think Wilco would leave after playing 25 songs, did you? Oh hell no. After a nine count, the band re-entered and played an amazing five-song encore, which included “Impossible Germany” and “Misunderstood.”
It was breathtaking, emotional, mind blowing.
It’s this reviewer’s first time experiencing Wilco live. I’m sure the Ryman had something to do with it, but the unadulterated attack of Wilco’s songs left me emotionally spent. Bravo.
Photo Credit Kelly E Schultz (k3schultz.com)