Report: Caitlin Rose Live in Portland (2)

 

Returning to the Doug Fir Lounge in Portland, Ore.,
on May 16, just barely more than a month since her last appearance there, the
singer-songwriter was in top form once again.

 

By Tim Hinely

Caitlin promised
us she’d be back and sure enough, a little over a month later and her she was
(the previous Doug Fir gig was 4/4/11). This time her band was a 5-piece with
the same guitarist (Jeremy Fetzer) and pedal steel player (Spencer Cullum)
while she added Jeff
Cullum on bass (Spencer’s brother and just for the record, both could be centers on any NBA team) and David Vaughn on drums. Rose was her usual playful self,
cracking jokes in between songs and showing off her bands new coozie (“Look
people, it’s still keeping my beer ice cold!”) and making lots of Twin Peaks jokes.

 

The crowd was
much bigger this time and some folks knew the songs and happily sung along
(myself included). Once again they opened with “Learning to Ride”, the first
song on her debut cd (Own Side Now)
and the added rhythm section gave the songs a bit more muscle, though with the
brushed drums not too much muscle. From the record we also heard “New York”, “Own Side”,
“Shanghai Cigarettes” and a gorgeous version of “For the Rabbits.” Again, she
did more covers including ones by Ry Cooder, The Coasters and Fleetwood Mac
(“That’s Alright”, which is on the record) this time, although I still want to
hear her version of the Stones’ “Dead Flowers” in a live setting. Rose is a total
natural, and a bit of a ham, too, and with her aw-shucks style and real loose
band they are nearly impossible not to like. Note that the guys are all
excellent players, and with Rose’s superb, soaring voice you have a perfect
recipe for a Monday night – or any night really. Don’t miss ‘em.

 

 

 

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