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Monday, August 27, 2012

So in love with Al Green at Wolf Trap

The Rev. Al Green at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie

He may be heavier and not as lithe on his feet.  He may have a little less energy, but his voice has not changed, still that unmistakable Al Green sound, strong and able to hit the high notes for minutes at a time, and he is 66 years old. 

The Rev. Al Green at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie

Al performed for a little over an hour at Wolf Trap to the cheers and delight of the sold-out crowd who came to hear the legend, and no one nearby expressed disappointment that the star of the night did not return for an encore. 

Compared to his visit four years ago at Wolf Trap, it was a tamer audience Friday night, not one to shake a tail feather too much in the aisles, but still enthusiastically in love and happiness with the man and his music.

"I sing because I am happy," he told his adoring fans, and he seemed glad to be there.

One of Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, Al sang the hits the fans came to hear (Take Me to the River, Love and Happiness, I'm Still in Love With You, Let's Stay Together, Tired of Being Alone), adding a blended medley of Roy Orbison (Pretty Woman)  and Otis Redding (I've Been Loving You Too Long).

The people joined in for many of the numbers and often sang a cappella without the entertainer, to the chagrin of some guests who came to hear him and not the throng. 

"I've had my ups and downs," Al told the crowd, but "God has been good to me!" He often gave thanks to the Lord which he does regularly in Memphis where he is a pastor at the Full Gospel Tabernacle, not too far from Graceland.

Al's backup crew of three females in sedate outfits strengthened his sound, and two male dancers, dressed identically and frequently changing costumes, added visuals.  There are no scantily-dressed performers on Al's stage. 

Al Green's backup singers/Patricia Leslie

He wore a white shirt and jacket (which he removed and put back on three times) and throughout his performance picked up long-stemmed red roses from the keyboard top which he cast to the ladies who were lucky enough to get seats up close.  We're still in love with you, Al.

The Rev. Al Green at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie

The Rev. Al Green at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie

The Rev. Al Green at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie


The Rev. Al Green at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie
 
 
The Rev. Al Green at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie
 
The evening started right with the incredible, Grammy award winning Taj Mahal, age 70, who played his own sexy brand of blues which combines zydeco, Reggae, and African sounds. 

Taj Mahal at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie
 
Taj Mahal at Wolf Trap/Patricia Leslie
 


patricialesli@gmail.com

 

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