Music » Music Reviews

Lyle Lovett, June 22


The infamous country/jazz musician (nobody knows where to put him) came to town last Wednesday and played at Merrill Park in Eagle. The backdrop was a scenic array of trees and mountains, while the heavy scent of sunscreen was in the air. Cheers arose as Lyle and his Big Band started off the warm night with a slew of well-orchestrated originals and covers. Awe-inspiring solos sprang from piano, saxophone and guitar alike. This was no one-man show. World-renowned drummer Russ Kunkel added a distinct flavor, truly accenting the amazing acoustics of Lovett's strumming. Yet another terrific addition to the lineup of the Big Band was that of Leland Sklar. Those of you who are familiar with this scene, you know who Lee Sklar is. After about three songs, and accompanied by amazing background vocalists, the instruments took over as a well-orchestrated and extremely talented array of musicians wowed the masses with world-class music. The rest of the Big Band slowly dwindled away as the subtle ensemble of folk-Lyle swept over the crowds, allowing a cool river breeze to ripple the wine in their glasses. As the sun began to set, the musicians filtered back in and I saw something that amazed me: a country cello. A country violin is a fiddle, so that raises the question of what to call the country cello. The end was a reunion of the band playing several songs regarding the glory of Texas (and one about Georgia, I think). Lyle greeted dusk with a rousing praise song, and walked off as a standing ovation roared through the crowd.