Sunday, February 8, 2009

Concert Review: Jewel’s Soulful Serenade at Foxwoods

On Friday night, singer-songwriter Jewel made a stop at the Fox Theatre at the Foxwoods Resort & Casino. She is currently on a solo acoustic tour performing songs from her entire catalog unplugged.

After a 30 minute wait, the curtain rose to display 2 acoustic guitars and a round table with flowers and Jewel’s song catalog. She strolled onstage, in a black mini-dress, to a spotlight at center stage. She warmed up the audience with an acappella version of the classic song “Somewhere Over The Rainbow”. She proceeded to pick up one of the acoustic guitars and begin her evening with “Near You Always”, a song from her debut album. Throughout the evening, Jewel told stories about her adventures growing up and performing. Her first story was about singing in biker bars when she was only 14 years old, which led her to perform “Last Dance Rodeo”. Jewel would ask the audience for requests from time to time throughout the evening. Her voice seemed perfectly in control, hitting the high notes with ease. She asked the audience if they recognized this song as she performed Neil Young’s “Needle And the Damage Done”, mentioning that her song “Little Sister” was her version of that song. Her story about becoming homeless and about hope during 9/11 would lead into her performance of the 1998 single, “Hands”.

One request was for the emotional song “Violet Eyes” which Jewel wrote about the passing of a close friend. Three songs from her 2008 album, “Perfectly Clear” would be showcased that evening, the title track, the anti-domestic violence song “Stronger Woman” and the love song “Thump, Thump”. Jewel mentioned that she was recording an album of lullabies to be released later this year. One song from this forthcoming album was called “Circle Song” in which Jewel needed to use her songbook for the lyrics. The end of her 90-minute set had Jewel performing some of her best known songs, “Standing Still”, “Foolish Games” and “You Were Meant For Me”. She finished with a story about the first song she ever wrote, which landed her a record contract, and closed with a “scat style” version of “Who Will Save Your Soul”.

Jewel would return to the stage to perform an acappella version of Nina Simone’s “The Other Woman”. One of the night’s biggest responses came when Jewel asked if the audience would like to hear some yodeling. She finished the evening with “Chime Bells”, which brought the audience to their feet giving Jewel a standing ovation for her intimate performance. Coming soon to the Fox Theatre is George Thorogood on March 13th and the Doo Wopp Hall of Fame on March 28th. Go to the Foxwoods Resort & Casino website for more information.

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