Sheryl Crow has a standing performance agreement that was announced to the half-filled 1stBank Center Saturday night at the benefit concert for Flight For Life Colorado – no photographs, videotaping and especially no cell phone shots.
This immediately puts most concertgoers and ushers in a bind. The de rigueur these days is to hold up the phone, post the photo to Facebook, share with your friends that you have a life. No explanation was given to why the 50-year-old Crow refuses to have her photo taken on stage. Frankly, you could have turned your back on the band and still gotten the benefits from her hit-filled show that leaned heavily on her 19-year-old debut album, “Tuesday Night Music Club.”
Despite the photo ban, fans seemed to eat up everything Crow offered. Crow’s music straddles country and KBCO-style pop-rock, making her kind of the female Jimmy Buffett. One new song, “Shotgun,” was a rave up and could likely be another hit. Even a song, “Real Gone,” from the Disney/Pixar film, “Cars,” had people up and dancing (sans camera phone, of course).
Crow had a tough act to follow. Amos Lee appeared solo with only his guitar and mesmerized the crowd with his soulful, bluesy tunes and a voice that is deep, high, bellowing, soaring and basically a21st century version of Sam Cooke. That, my friends, is saying a lot.
On Lee’s finale, which he said he sang about four years ago to the day at an Obama rally in Philadelphia with Bruce Springsteen, was Cooke’s “A Change is Gonna Come.” I don’t think Lee is hoping for another change this election, since he clearly still supports Obama.
Fans were frustrated that Lee’s set was only eight songs. He made it a point to let the audience know that the short set was not his idea. Lee, wearing a denim jacket and jeans and a knit cap, looked like he just walked off the corner where he may have been holding a sign for handouts. Despite that, he didn’t seem to mind all the cameras.
Openers, the Dunwells, from Britain, had tight harmonies and plucky songs. This band will be heard from again.
Jeremy Meyer is a City Hall reporter at The Denver Post and a regular contributor to Reverb.
Jackie Zoeller is a Denver photographer and a new contributor to Reverb.