So the Gourds played the Gothic Theater down south of Denver last Saturday night (March 14).
I shamed Gracey into coming with me. I’ve been trying to force her to listen to the Gourds for about a year. Truth is, it’s really hard to get her to listen to much besides the Drive-By Truckers and her local Wyoming bands (see Hogback). But there were other, more worldly, folks coming down from Wyoming (peer pressure still works) and I promised her some corn chips. That did the trick.
Of course, she was wearing a Drive-By Truckers shirt (I think that might be all she owns). A guy offered her $1000 for it. That’s when she started believing me that Gourds fans are fun, and maybe more than a little whacked out.
And she wasn’t disappointed. I was too lazy to take notes or anything but I can swipe the playlist from other places it’s posted. Surprisingly, they didn’t play anything from their second-to-latest CD (which I count as one of their best) Noble Creatures – except Cranky Mulatto which doesn’t count ’cause it’s an old song – but they played plenty of tracks from the latest CD, Haymaker! and plenty of older tracks as well.
As the Wyoming crowd predicted, the first song was "Country Love." It served the purpose. Maybe it was just because I was down in front but it seemed like everyone in the place was up and dancing – some of us better than others. I should admit that I am grossly impaired as a dancer, even drunk (once, at a Gourds show, some woman bitched me out because of it), but that is where having Gracey along comes in handy. She has all the moves and she uses them all so no one even notices me.
Jimmy Smith played my favorite song on Haymaker! – Bridget – and it’s even better live. With Max playing the fiddle, it reminded me a lot of Roll and Tumble, one of the all-time great Gourds songs but these lyrics are even funnier ("thanks for the lift, you old geezer"). And Jimmy is so sincere when he sings it.
We had a primo spot right front of Claude (Benard) and Jimmy. Claude, who has shaved since I last saw him, was looking mighty fine. I took a picture of him and his accordion with my cell phone but I think my phone maybe had a little too much to drink before the show.
Kev (Russell) was high stepping all over the stage. I kept waiting for him to trip over all his cords but he was far too nimble.
Jimmy had the wild hair thing going. Again. Always fun to see how that is going to turn out.
They treated us to many of the old favorites: Caledonia, Maria, Blankets, Trampled By The Sun . . And then they came out for the encore and we got El Paso, Jorge (for my cat), Waxy’s Dargle, and that song from the Growin’ A Beard documentary, cause we were sneaking up on St. Patrick’s Day. I don’t remember when they played Dirty Plaid Coat but I was mighty glad to hear that one too.
Yeah, they played some great songs. 26 of them. And I guess they can’t play all my favorites at every show but I can’t wait for them to come back again and play me some more. Seeing the Gourds live is the best deal going.
Edit: Hey, look what some nice person posted on YouTube! Claude singing Whiskey in The Jar for St. Patrick’s Day.