Concert review: Robert Earl Keen at State Theatre (with pics)

[image-1]Keen’s song selection for the evening included standards such as “Undone”, “The Road Goes On Forever” and “Shades of Gray”, as well as some newer songs like “Something I Do” and “Throwing Rocks” from his latest CD The Rose Hotel. My favorite tune of the evening was Keen’s dead-on version of Townes Van Zandt’s “Flyin’ Shoes”, which also appears on The Rose Hotel.

[image-2]Robert Earl Keen’s band featured Rich Brotherton on guitar, Bill Whitbeck on bass, Tom Van Schaik on drums and Marty Muse on keys and slide guitar. Performing on stage with Keen, this group of longtime friends and extremely talented band mates made the concert feel more like having a few beers with your friends and listening to a kick-ass neighborhood band. Nothing formal or uptight, just great music and lots of fun.  I can’t wait to see Robert the next time he makes it to town.

I’ll be the first to admit that I love live music. And somewhere in the midst of my typical monthly schedule of 12-15 concerts, there are my favorites. Last night’s show by Texas-born songwriter Robert Earl Keen will win this month’s award, hands down.

Taking the stage in a wide-brimmed Stetson hat, Keen wasted no time giving the capacity crowd exactly what they came to hear. Launching right into “Undone”, a Keen-standard, fans immediately started to sing along in unison. Most of the people who attend a Robert Earl Keen show are very dedicated and loyal fans who know all of the songs, so this sing-along trend continued with each new song. Keen joked and told stories throughout the evening in typical Robert Earl Keen style. (more after the jump)

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