Concert Review: Guy Davis @ The Linda, 11/11/2022
ALBANY – Twice Grammy-nominated bluesman Guy Davis made a stop at the Linda this past Friday night. He brought along his library of acoustic blues, traditional folk music, covers, and originals to share with the audience, through two sets of music accompanying himself with guitar, 12-string, banjo, and harmonica.
Davis is more than a blues man, he is a troubadour of the folk tradition and playwright.
Along with blues standards made famous by Muddy Waters, John Lee Hooker, and Howlin’ Wolf, there were songs by the Weavers and Bob Dylan, as well as self-penned songs.
“Lay Lady Lay,” a wistful Dylan love song, and “Just Like A Woman” came by way of Richie Havens, Guy’s gravelly voice providing additional meaning to the song. Self-penned “Letter in My Pocket” is a song about a lost-but-never-forgotten reunion with forbidden love. “Early in the Morning” sings about the uncertainty of life and a reminder never to take anything for granted. A more positive reflection on the cycle of life was represented by the old chestnut by the Weavers, “Kisses Sweeter Than Wine” (recorded a long time ago, even before I was born).
“Meet In the Bottom,” “Baby Please Don’t Go,” and “That’s No Way To Get Along” had many in the audience singing quietly to the lyrics. More formal singalongs, Pete Seeger-style, were performed; Guy’s own “Shakee Pudding” from Sugar Belly and the Sonny Terry/Brownie McGhee number, “Shortening Bread.”
Davis implored us all to be more kind to each other, something that is needed in these times. Guy himself is experiencing several personal tragedies, as many of us are. His concert and music reminded us of what a refuge live music is and will continue to be. With the help of you and others, we can all get through anything.