The Greek Theater shined so bright this past Friday evening with its beautiful company. Brandi Carlile made her Greek Theater debut and did the damn thing! The 37-year-old singer-songwriter is on tour in support of her sixth studio record, By The Way, I Forgive You. Fans poured in with nothing but pure excitement to witness one of today’s most talented folk musicians perform. Seemingly overjoyed to be there, Carlile and her band of talented friends began the night her new album’s lead track “Every Time I Hear That Song.” The mood instantly rang so powerful and true. Performing many other songs off her new record, listeners swayed back and forth in their seats, taking in the stories in the music. In the emotional ballad “The Joke,” Carlile challenges your heartstrings with her shaky vocals. She’s not your run-of-the-mill Americana or folk musician. Carlile challenges relatable topics in her lyrics such as LGBT struggles, forgiveness and addiction. There’s a strong sense of togetherness in Carlile’s music and her performance Friday evening simply blew everyone away. The star also covered the 1971 classic, “A Case of You” by Joni Mitchell, followed by the Led Zeppelin version of “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You,” originally by 50’s folk singer, Anne Bredon. Whether the crowd were on their feet applauding the exceptional vocals or getting their country dancing on, they were moved. We also got to witness a very special encore in tribute to the late undisputed ‘Queen Of Soul’, Aretha Franklin. Bringing out friends from Darlingside, the four-piece act who opened the show, and a very special guest, Jim James, the now supergroup took on a splendid mash up of songs, “Do Right Woman, Do Right Man” and “Respect.” The audience stood in awe, with tears in their eyes as the night came to a remarkable end.
Words & Photography: Danielle Gornbein