Okay, I have to confess, I’m just a tad excited. Yesterday I got tickets for the Sunday afternoon performance of American Originals at Cincinnati Music Hall.
So why so excited? I hear you say
Well, how about this for a line-up:
Rosanne Cash – One of my favorite artists, who’s album The River and the Thread was one of my top ten albums of 2014. I briefly saw her on stage at the end of the Americana Awards show at the Ryman Auditorium in September 2013 and have been wanting to see her ever since.
Dom Flemons – Formerly with the Carolina Chocolate Drops, who I saw when he was still a member, at the City Varieties Music Hall, Leeds, England in October 2012. I also saw Dom Flemons late last year when he compered Pokey Lafarge‘s Central Time Tour, which was one of my top ten gigs of last year.
Over The Rhine – I’ve not yet seen Over The Rhine, but I understand they’re a Cincinnati institution, so it’ll be cool to catch one of my new home town bands.
Aoife O’Donovan – I’ve heard her a few times on Bob Harris‘s Radio 2 show and I’ve been wanting to see her live for quite a while now.
The other two acts on the bill are the Comet Bluegrass Allstars and Joe Henry. I’ve not heard of either of these, so a bit of research is required.
All these acts are going to be performing with the world-famous Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.
The show will be based around the songs of Stephen Foster, who reputedly was America’s first great songwriter. Being a Brit, who’s only been living in the States for just over a year, and in Cincinnati for four months, I’m not fully au fait with Stephen Foster, but being a music fan, I’m obviously aware of the Great American Songbook. I’m also aware of the black face minstrel tradition for which Stephen Foster is known for, as during my childhood back in the UK, there used to be a light entertainment program, on the BBC, called the Black and White Minstrel Show. The show was very popular and ran for 20 year and won a Golden Rose at Montreux for Best Light Entertainment program. However, after numerous complaints it finally was pulled in 1978.
This show introduced me to many of Stephen Foster‘s songs, including Oh Susanna!,Camptown Races,Swanee River & My Old Kentucky Home amongst others. So whilst the manner used, on the Black and White Minstrel Show, of showcasing the songs was abhorrent, it did contribute greatly to my love of music, and Americana in particular.
One added bonus of going on Sunday is that I get to see Hickory Robot again, as they’re providing the pre-concert entertainment. I saw them at the CincyGroove Music Festival last year, where they were excellent, so it will be good to see them again.
Another reason for the excitement is that this will be my first visit to the Cincinnati Music Hall. I’ve been in Cincinnati for four months and have been waiting for the right concert before making my first visit, and the American Originals fits the bill perfectly!