Printer Friendly

BLIND BOYS SURE PLAY A MEAN ROYCE HALL.

Byline: David Kronke Staff Writer

``Every time you buy a CD, I can eat a hot dog,'' joked Clarence Fountain, the founding member of the gospel vocal ensemble Blind Boys of Alabama during their performance Saturday night at UCLA's Royce Hall. Judging from the reception to the Blind Boys' performance, Fountain could spend the next couple of seasons at Dodger Stadium gratis. The Blind Boys sang to the converted - if not adherents to their particular religious precepts, then certainly those persuaded as to the transcending power of the group's gritty, soulful harmonies.

Resplendent in silky gold suits, Fountain and fellow original Blind Boy Jimmy Carter commanded center stage (George Scott was absent due to illness). They were accompanied by a band of musicians who have replaced singers lost through attrition (they have been performing since 1939, after all), and the all-star session band that performed the gospel vocal ensemble on its recent exquisite album ``The Spirit of the Century'': guitarists David Lindley and John Hammond, harmonica player Charlie Musselwhite, bassist Danny Thompson and drummer Michael Jerome.

Songs from ``Spirit of the Century'' almost exclusively filled the first set; Hammond performed his tune ``One Kind Favor,'' while Musselwhite offered up his song ``Rank Strangers.'' Highlights included the wrenchingly heartfelt ``Give a Man a Home,'' the propulsive ``Soldier,'' ``Motherless Child'' and a haunting version of ``Amazing Grace'' sung to the tune of ``House of the Rising Sun.''

The second set was more of an old-fashioned gospel rave-up, with the raspy baritone Fountain frequently playing to the crowd by strutting in place. Carter's lived-in tenor holds notes for impossible lengths of time; at the finale he bounded into the audience, mixing it up with fans, hopping and spinning like a dervish and repeatedly spurning his handler's efforts to steer him back to the stage.
COPYRIGHT 2002 Daily News
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2002, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:Review; L.A. Life
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Jan 15, 2002
Words:301
Previous Article:WHAT A SUPREME DISAPPOINTMENT.
Next Article:IN-FLIGHT MOVIES TAKE OFF BOEING TECHNOLOGY TO TRANSMIT NEW FILMS.


Related Articles
BEST OF THE WEEKEND.
MINORS IN LIBERAL ARTS; VALENCIA PLAYERS INVOLVED IN MUSIC AND DRAMA.
BOYS CHOIR INCONSISTENT.
THE HYPE HOME IS WHERE HER HEART IS FIDDLER NATALIE MACMASTER BRINGS A LOVE OF NOVA SCOTIA ALONG.
STAPLES CENTER READY TO ROCK; SPARKLING DOWNTOWN ARENA SHOULD BE BEST SHOW IN TOWN.
`JEKYLL & HYDE' SEASON LOOMS IN PERFORMING ARTS.
WHAT BRANFORD MARSALIS KNOWS; EXPERIENCES HAVE CHANGED JAZZ SAXOPHONIST'S ATTITUDES ABOUT HIMSELF, MUSIC AND HIS SON.
DOES HANDEL GRAB YOU?
YO-YO MA PLAYS FREE AT THE GROVE.
FROM GOSPEL TO GRAMMY BLIND BOYS SEE UNIVERSAL APPEAL OF THEIR SANCTIFIED SOUND.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters