Rodriguez Comes Alive! This Saturday!

 

Cult hero makes rare
(only) Southern appearance in Asheville,
NC.

 

By Fred Mills

 

Pretty much anyone with their ear even just partly to the
ground in 2008 caught a bit of the Rodriguez buzz – Sixto Rodriguez, whose 1970
album Cold Fact, long a gem for
crate-diggers and collectors of obscure psych/soul/folkrock, was reissued by
Light In The Attic. NPR aired an in-depth profile of the man back in the fall,
while among the many critical kudos he garnered, your friendly neighborhood
BLURT named the album one of our top archival releases for ’08, just behind
Dennis Wilson’s Pacific Ocean Blue,
if you can dig that.

 

Our previous coverage of Rodriguez includes the CD review itself and details on a handful of live performances, including a show in NYC in September and a radio station session in Detroit in October. Since then there have
also been a couple of West Coast gigs, including one in San Francisco on Nov. 23 featuring a 10-piece
backing band composed of members of The Fresh & Onlys. Reviewing it for
Jambase.com
, Jim Welte observed that while Rodriguez’ voice does betray some of
the vicissitudes of age and that the man’s stage presence “was as awkward as
you’d expect from someone who hasn’t spent much time on a stage in recent years,”
the experience was still a great one featuring songs “so good and so emblematic
of their era.” Concluded Welte, “Rodriguez would be hard-pressed to capitalize
on the renewed interest in his music with new albums, but he’s earned the right
to keep showing off the two he’s already made.”

 

So this weekend, Saturday 10th, Rodriguez appears
in Asheville, NC, at music venue the Grey Eagle. It’s a
push on the part of local indie store Harvest Records to bring the man to a
wider audience, and for the event a local supergroup of sorts, fronted by Greg
Cartwright (Reigning Sound mainman, natch), will be backing Rodriguez.
Certainly the pick-up nature of the backing band may have had something to do
with the man’s perceived awkwardness in San Francisco so there’s no predicting
how things will go down in Asheville – but I have it on good authority that the
band has been tirelessly rehearsing 15 songs and has ‘em down solid, so my gut
feeling is that a good time is guaranteed for all.

 

It’s not every day you get to see a legend in the flesh.

 

 

Details: The Grey Eagle www.thegreyeagle.com/

Harvest Records: www.harvest-records.com/

Rodriguez on the web: www.sugarman.org/

 

 

 

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