Before you say, is not Emily releasing an album due out with Marry Waterson at the end of March? The answer is yes, but details on that remained a little sketchy during the evening. The focus was entirely on the solo work and evidence surfacing during the show looked like Emily drifting back into serious ballad mode after her soulful jaunt down Memphis way for the award winning SWEET KIND OF BLUE album.
Alongside a gorgeous voice, deft playing and an engaging charm in sharing her thoughts with an audience, Emily did indulge in one cover and few complained when she gave a sweetened gloss to Springsteen’s ‘Tougher Than the Rest’. Like all of her gigs, you do not need to be a long-term fan to get something out of it, but one certainty is that any room is likely to empty with a raft of new fans.
Opening the show this evening was Birmingham singer-songwriter Michael King, making a rare solo appearance away from his regular music role of fronting the band Boat to Row. He too used the opportunity to share some new tunes, which are likely to appear on the band’s upcoming album once entangled from the funding mess instigated by Pledge’s mismanagement. Michael embraced the opportunity to share a few songs in this format and will benefit from further exposure as he forges ahead with the band’s latest project.
Long term Emily Barker fans know that there is often something new round the corner and this shows no sign of abating. Nights like this demonstrate what a dedicated and fan-focussed artist she is and whether you joined her bandwagon in 2009 or 2019, the treat is all on the listener.
Pictures Courtesy of Wayne Fox Photography