Sunday, 21 October 2012

Mary Chapin Carpenter and Shawn Colvin at The Sage

Mary Chapin Carpenter and Shawn Colvin
The Sage, Gateshead

Two years have flown by since I last saw Mary Chapin Carpenter at The Sage. On that occasion, she had her full band in action plus energetic support from Tift Merritt. This time, Mary was joined by long-standing friend Shawn Colvin and it was just the two of them, playing an acoustic set. This was the first night of their tour.

The friends clearly enjoyed each others company on the stage and they shared plenty of banter between songs, on subjects including contact lenses (Shawn Colvin doesn't wear them and consequently has trouble reading the set list) lost luggage (Mary's cases were still missing in action), bad airlines and  borrowed clothes.

The set list featured solo material from their respective albums plus a plethora of cover songs from artistes including Steve Earle, The Beatles and Donovan. Four songs were taken from Mary Chapin Carpenter's new album, Ashes and Roses, which is a typically introspective work of light and shade.

The duo were at their best when they sang in harmony; my only criticism of this very pleasant event is that the majority of the songs really were solo efforts, with one half the duo being rendered superfluous. Nevertheless, it was an enjoyable and thought provoking evening.

Set List

Catch The Wind
I Have a Need for Solitude
Riding Shotgun Down the Avalanche
Chasing What's Already Gone
The Only Living Boy in New York
What to Keep and What to Throw Away
All Fall Down
The Shirt
Four Seasons in One Day
Hold On
Don't Need Much to be Happy
Round of Blues
The Hard Way


I'll Be Back
Transcendental Reunion
That's The Way Love Goes

For tour dates and other news, I refer the reader to the official websites of Mary Chapin Carpenter and Shawn Colvin.

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