Archive for the Lydia Salnikova Category

Jonatha Brooke: Live in Nashville

Posted in Jonatha Brooke, Lydia Salnikova on April 1, 2010 by AmericanaPulse
This past weekend, my wife and I took a mini vacation to Nashville. My wife is five months pregnant with our first child, and we decided to take a weekend for ourselves before the new arrival arrives this summer. We stayed at a lovely Bed & Breakfast in East Nashville, ate some BBQ and home cooking, toured the Ryman, and generally just tried to relax.

The main reason for our trip, however, was that Jonatha Brooke was playing a Sunday night show at 3rd and Lindsley. Jonatha is one of my wife’s favorite artists, and (thanks to my wife’s tutelage) someone I’ve come to enjoy as well. I bought the tickets for her, but I was excited for the show as well.

The show was part of a regular Sunday night concert series that is aired live on Nashville’s Lightning 100 radio. It’s a two hour broadcast that features one artist in the first hour and then follows with the headliner during the second half of the show.

Sunday’s opening artist was Russian singer/songwriter Lydia Salnikova. Lydia’s name may be familiar to some of you. She first came to acclaim as the keyboardist and vocalist for the Grammy nominated Russian bluegrass band Bering Strait. Lydia lives in Nashville now and is trying to make her mark as a solo artist. She played a sombre, forty minute solo set that was full of melodic, keyboard fueled melancholy.

I don’t have any of her music to share with you because she hasn’t released anything yet. She has, however, been working with Jonatha’s former producer (and former husband) Allain Mallet. You can hear one of the early tracks from their collaboration at Lydia’s website.

After Lydia’s set, Jonatha came out for the second hour of the show and proceeded to take command of the crowd from the very first note of the opening song, “Hearsay” from 2007’s Careful What You Wish For. Some artists get on the stage, run through their set, and sound nice enough doing it… but never really reach that level where they transcend the stage and truly connect with their audience. Others can simply plug in their instruments and transport the room to another place.

Jonatha Brooke is one of the latter. Her four piece band created an incredibly dense sound with each note oozing out of the speakers to fill every inch of the room. Whether she was playing the acoustic based blues of “All You Gotta Do is Touch Me,” or wailing away over the more raucous “Inconsolable” and “Crumbs,” Jonatha and her band got the most out of each and every note. They played a full hour for the radio show, played another brief set off-air for the live audience, then stuck around for an encore after that. It still wasn’t enough.

Sunday night was my first experience seeing Jonatha live, and I’d gladly go see her again. She was a true professional on stage and put on one tremendous show. It would have been well worth the trip to Nashville for the just the show itself.

Here’s a studio version of one of the songs Jonatha played Sunday night. This is “Crumbs” from 10 Cent Wings.
Jonatha Brooke: Crumbs (Buy Album)