On March 23, 2013, acclaimed singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile performed at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. The Lone Bellow, a Brooklyn-based group, served as her opening act.
Brandi sang new material from her newest album Bear Creek, which was released via her label Columbia Records, as well as her older songs.
She commenced herself with her “Intro” and immediately broke into “Raise Hell,” as the stage was graced in a red backdrop.
“New York City!” Brandi exclaimed. “What an honor to be here. Look at all you people. This is not a concert. It is a party.”
She continued with “Dreams” as the stage’s backdrop changed to blue and she praised her crowd for their energy. “You guys are so much fun,” Brandi said.
Prior to singing “Throw It All Away,” she noted that it was her first song ever played on radio and she subsequently reflected that this marks her tenth year playing with her band mates, Tim Hanseroth and Phil Hanseroth, both of which are affectionately known as “The Twins.” “It’s been a really great road,” she shared.
Her vocals on “Hard Way Home” were stunning and reminiscent to those of such songstresses as Loretta Lynn and Melissa Etheridge.
She showcased her prowess on piano as she played “Before It Breaks” and immediately broke into “100,” where the stage was yet again graced in a red backdrop.
Particularly impressive about her version of “What Can I Say” was that she performed it without a microphone, backed solely by acoustic instruments such as a fiddle, two guitars and a cello. This unplugged rendition earned Brandi her first well-deserved standing ovation of the evening.
“That was amazing. This has never happened before,” Brandi said overcome with emotion. “I wanted this show to be a celebration.”
She had the audience clapping along on her single “Keep Your Heart Young,” a country tune which was penned by The Twins.
Brandi noted that her Looking Out Foundation has recently partnered up with “Why Hunger,” a New York-based nonprofit organization which works towards ending hunger and subsequently dedicated her song “Looking Out” to them, which she performed solo.
“Let’s get the boys back out here,” Brandi said and continued with “Again Today,” as well as a rendition of “Jolene,” where she paid tribute to one of her greatest musical idols, Dolly Parton.
Brandi praised the Beacon Theatre venue for being a “magical room,” as well as one of the “best” theaters in the country. She was thrilled to play here, especially since in October (when she was originally scheduled to perform), her show was postponed since New York was affected by Hurricane Sandy.
Following “Dying Day,” she introduced her talented band to the audience and closed with her signature song, the powerhouse “The Story,” which she dedicated to the New York crowd.
For the encore, The Twins came out and performed the Simon and Garfunkel classic “The Sound of Silence” and Brandi returned to sing a stellar rendition of the emotional “Nothing Compares 2 U,” which would have certainly made Sinead O’Connor proud.
“Thank you so much New York City,” Brandi said graciously.
She praised The Lone Bellow for being an amazing band and they sang “Pride and Joy,” as well as her debut single of her latest album “That Wasn’t Me” on piano.
Her final song was the John Prine-penned “Angel from Montgomery,” which she performed as a duet with The Lone Bellow.
“Thank you so much,” Brandi concluded. “It’s been an incredible night. We love you.”
Overall, Brandi Carlile gave New York City’s Beacon Theatre a night of music to remember. Her vocals were top-notch, captivating and in a league of their own. There were no gimmicks. Only a woman with a powerhouse voice that is able to send chills down her audience’s spines. Her guitar playing ability and piano skills were noteworthy as well. Brandi's energy was infectious and she inspired her audience to stomp their feet, clap, dance and sing along with her. Her band members and special guest artists, The Lone Bellow, were equally impressive. Her live show garnered an A+ rating.
For more information on Brandi Carlile, visit her official website.