Richard Shindell in West Hartford, CT

On Saturday, after a great dinner at Pho Boston, Jenn and I drove across town to the University of Hartford for a Richard Shindell concert. Ever since I saw him open for Susan McKeown many years ago (maybe 1995?), Richard has been a favorite of mine, and pretty much the only male folk singer that I actually consider myself to be a fan of. That’s probably why I make the effort to see him play at least a couple of times a year, when he makes the trek north from his current home in Argentina.

Richard was accompanied by a violinist this time around, and she added a nice dimension to several of the songs without ever overwhelming his voice or guitar. It was a fairly long set, with songs from many of his albums, including the recent cover CD, South of Delia, and we also got a few new songs:

  • Get Up, Clara (a somewhat silly song about a mule and the fall of Rome)
  • State of the Union (the second of his songs set around September 18, 2001)
  • Balloon Man (a song about a balloon seller back in Buenos Aires)

Despite seeming a bit ragged after a few weeks on the road, Richard put on an excellent show, as always, and his voice and guitar playing were both in fine form. I’ll definitely be looking forward to seeing him again when he plays at the Iron Horse on November 9th.

I should also mention the opening act for the evening, Natalia Zukerman. A folk singer whose vocal style at times bore some resemblance to Ani Difranco’s, she was also an incredibly good guitarist, and had some pretty good stage patter too. It was one of those rare cases where I actually liked sitting through an opener. Check her out if she’s playing near you.

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