Tag Archives: Bluegrass

Sam Bush playing “Billy Bob” Marley’s “One Love”

When Sam Bush and his band started to play this bluegrass-reggae fusion of “One Love” by Bob Marley (or “Billy Bob” Marley as Sam Bush called him) I fumbled with my new camera to start recording. I missed the first minute or two, but still captured almost ten minutes. My son-in-law has played bass in reggae bands so I wanted him to hear this. He and my daughter have seen Sam Bush with us in this concert series in the past. As an unexpected bonus, the bass guitarist played a solo.

Sam Bush 2011, Olathe Free Summer Concert series.

Sam Bush 2011, Olathe Free Summer Concert series.

This is the fifth year we’ve seen Sam Bush play in the Olathe Free Concert Series, which is in its 14th year.  Sam Bush performed this year on June 7th. (2013) I noticed as I looked at my photos from previous years that there’s at least one person in front of the stage wearing the same shirt each time.  See if you can find him.  You’ll see him in the video, too.

From the Olathe Website: “The Olathe FREE Summer Concert series began in 2000. Each year it showcases top quality, cutting edge artists featuring a variety of family friendly genres of music. Thanks to the support from the population at large and our generous sponsors, we are accomplishing that goal. Over the past 14 years the Olathe Parks and Recreation Department has presented local, regional, national and international performers. Some of these artists are in the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, have won numerous Grammy Awards, have written #1 Hits on the Billboard charts, won Blues Music Awards, Country Music Awards and are in the Kansas Music Hall of Fame.
The series brings not only music to Olathe, but community giving. Each show a local charity is recognized and concert goers are encouraged to make donations. In the last 8 years more than $127,000 has been given back by the more than 15,000 a year attendees.”

Official Sam Bush Website.

Here’s a blog post I wrote about Asleep at the Wheel, which performed at the Olathe Free Summer Concert Series in 2010.

Sam Bush 2010, Olathe Free Summer Concert series.

Sam Bush 2010, Olathe Free Summer Concert series.

 

Sam Bush 2012, Olathe Free Concert Series.

Sam Bush 2012, Olathe Free Concert Series.

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Alison Krauss and Robert Plant

Alison Krauss, Robert Plant and T-Burnett (above) perform their encore at a concert at Starlight Theater in Kansas City on Tuesday, September 23.  They played “Don’t Knock,” “When the Levee Breaks,” “Killing the Blues” and “One Woman Man.” There are two more videos at the bottom.

In 1984, when Alison Krauss was thirteen, she won the fiddle championship at the Walnut Valley Festival in Winfield, Kansas, near where I grew up, and I’ve watched her from afar ever since.

This is the set list for the Krauss-Plant September 23, 2008, concert at Starlight. The concert didn't follow this list exactly, but it's close enough.

This is the set list for the Krauss-Plant September 23, 2008, concert at Starlight. The concert didn't follow this order exactly, but it's close enough.

Krauss is an extraordinary bluegrass violinist and singer.  She’s exquisite as her bow flies over her violin.  Her voice is high, rich and pure,  like crystal ringing.  She’s won 20 Grammy awards, more than any other female artist and is tied for seventh most won by any artist.

When she joined with Robert Plant on stage, it was incredible.  I’d already listened to my recording of their album “Raising Sand” scores of times.  They seem so in “tune” with each other in so many ways, maybe even smitten.  Plant kept giving her kisses.  The September 23rd concert was the first night of the second leg of their tour.  Plant said they’d been apart on stage for forty days.  He sounded like a lover being reunited with his beloved.

For those who might not be familiar with Krauss’ work, she performed on the soundtracks of “O Brother, Where Art Thou?” and “Cold Mountain.”  She isn’t splashed across the pages of magazines or chased by paparazzi the way a lot of no-talent celebrities are.  She simply performs like an angel, and we are raised to heaven by her musical gifts. 

Alison Krauss, Robert Plant.

Alison Krauss, Robert Plant.

To learn more about her go to about Alison Krauss.  Her official website is Alison Krauss.  She’s now touring with Robert Plant.  Go to his website at Robert Plant.  Krauss and Plant recently performed at a music festival in Austin, Texas.  You can read about it here: Hitting the Radar: A Festival Soars in Texas. For my post on Robert Plant and Led Zeppelin click here.  Robert Plant is my favorite musician…….

Below is a documentary about Krauss and Plant coming together to make “Raising Sand.” Below that is a video of Krauss and Plant performing Led Zeppelin’s “The Battle of Evermore” at Starlight Theater on September 23, 2008.

Allison Krauss and Robert Plant play with T-Bone Burnett and his band at Starlight Theater in Kansas City.

Allison Krauss and Robert Plant play with T-Bone Burnett and his band at Starlight Theater on September 23, 2008, in Kansas City.

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Robert Plant and Led Zeppelin

Robert Plant and Alison Krauss (above) with T-Bone Burnett perform their version of Led Zeppelin’s “Black Dog” at Starlight Theater in Kansas City on Tuesday, September 23.  At the bottom is Led Zeppelin’s version of “Black Dog” in 1973.

On August 20, 1970, in the last days before I headed off to college, some friends and I drove two hours to Oklahoma City to see Led Zeppelin at the State Fairgrounds Arena.  It was a long trip, but worth every mile.  (Although I didn’t do the driving.)  “Whole Lotta Love” was a hit by this time, but like the Grateful Dead, Led Zeppelin focused on the whole experience.  It wasn’t about one song.  The band members resisted releasing their music as singles and avoided television appearances, preferring that their fans experience the music as a total performance, which we were thrilled to be doing. 

Alison Krauss and Robert Plant at Starlight Theater in Kansas City.

Alison Krauss and Robert Plant at Starlight Theater in Kansas City.

I fell in love with Led Zeppelin in January 1969 when the first album was released.  It affected me the way no other music did before nor has since.  I’m definitely a Led Head.

I didn’t have enough money to buy the first album myself, so I split the cost with my sister.  I wisely decided to buy the second album (October 1969) on my own (with my meager earnings as a cashier at Mr. Steak) when I realized there might be a problem sharing the first album when I left for college.  I’ve bought every album since, then duplicated the same in compact discs and have purchased every other variation produced.  I’ve helped in my small way to make the Atlantic Recording Corporation very successful.

That Led Zeppelin’s history coincided with my formative years may have had a wee bit to do with my adoration. That band was the soundtrack to my young life.

Despite my enthusiasm for Led Zeppelin, it was never about the band members themselves. I didn’t pay attention to their antics or what they looked like.  When the band broke up in 1980 after the death of John Bonham, I followed Robert Plant’s career.

Led Zeppelin in 1969 at the beginning of the band's career.

Led Zeppelin in 1969 at the beginning of the band

At first, I was hoping Plant would continue the heavier sound of the band, but he was more whimsical, more lyrical, perhaps because he’s a singer.  Anyway, I was hooked.  I recognized in Plant’s work, despite the differences, the fusion of so many of the elements and musical styles that had made Led Zeppelin the biggest band in the world in the 1970s.  They played not just rock, but Celtic, Arabic, classical, reggae, blues, folk and country and a dozen other genres.

I’ve seen Robert Plant four times, including once with Jimmy Page and this latest concert with Alison Krauss.  Some critics were perplexed when Plant joined with Krauss, but I said: Hey, you don’t know Robert the way I do!  It’s totally Plant’s style to combine his own multifaceted work with Krauss’ country and bluegrass music.  At his concert with Krauss, he mused that he wasn’t sure what their musical fusion was called, but he said it was definitely “smokin’,” and he was right about that.  Plant is an amusing guy, too, and his witty comments are known as “plantations.”

Robert Plant.

Robert Plant.

Led Zeppelin reunited for a concert last year in England with John Bonham’s son Jason as the drummer and is planning a tour in 2009.  Robert Plant has made a statement that he won’t be the singer, however.  That’s crushing news.  If he changes his mind, I’M GONNA CRAWL for a WHOLE LOTTA LOVE even if I have to make a MISTY MOUNTAIN HOP on a STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN and even if it means GOING TO CALIFORNIA, because I’m just a LIVING LOVING MAID who would find it a HEARTBREAKER if I had a COMMUNICATION BREAKDOWN and was a FOOL IN THE RAIN if I missed the show.  Remember fans, YOUR TIME IS GONNA COME because HOW MANY MORE TIMES can we be DAZED AND CONFUSED and find it TEN YEARS GONE, and we still haven’t seen the concert.  THANK YOU for letting me RAMBLE ON.

You can read the history of Led Zeppelin by clicking here and on Led Zeppelin’s official website.  Also for news of what Plant is up to, go to Robert Plant’s official website.  Maybe he’ll change his mind about not touring.

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