Nu Country's web mistress and Tonkgirl ventured to the launch of Jeff Lang's new CD Whatever Makes You Happy at the Corner on Friday night.
We arrived at around 9.30 when the launch was in full swing. GIT were up on stage rocking out songs from their repertoire exhibiting their usual verve and sassiness along with their wonderful harmonies.
Jeff Lang performed another song, the title of which escapes me, before introducing Matt Walker who gave a rendition of "You Put a Spell On Me". Jeff Lang played lap steel guitar, Tim Hall played harmonica and GIT provided backing vocals. This was followed by Jeff Lang singing "Everything is Still" and "The Road is Not Your Only Friend", both from his new album.
The stage was then abandoned while Jeff took a short break. Crowd attention shifted to the other stage where Headbelly Buzzard were providing the only "twang" of the night, playing lively country tunes like "Blackeyed Susie".
A highlight was "By Face Not Name" where GIT provided backing vocals. On the CD Whatever Makes You Happy this song is performed as a duet with Susannah Espie.
Thus the evening continued, Jeff Lang singing most of the songs from Whatever Makes You Happy - "You Should Have Waited", "Switchblade", "I Still See You"," Rejected Novelist Fails Again", "Too Easy to Kill" (about America's obsession with guns) and ended the session with a Tom Waits song "Bringing the Band" with GIT.
Enthusiastic applause drew him out for an encore of two songs, "Gina" and "Burn the Bridge" the last with just Jeff Lang and the string bass player Grant Comerford.
The show lasted for approximately 3 hours. The venue was packed with enthusiastic fans who were treated to an evening of great music, both blues and rock with a dash of twang from GIT and Headbelly Buzzard.
Being unfamiliar with Jeff Lang's work, I was pleasantly surprised and impressed by his performance and his skills on guitar. Thanks to a young man standing close by in the crowd I was able to find out the titles to most of the songs.
Review and photos by Anne Sydenham 2004