KCD Theater opened its fall season with Nanci Griffith last night accompanied by Pat McInerney, Pete Kennedy, and Maura Kennedy. Headmaster Brad Lyman introduced the act and stood back to enjoy the show. Nanci performed before a sold-out audience of adoring fans and friends that seemed to really enjoy the show. The sound in the new KCD Theater was great all evening. The Kennedy’s opened the evening on their own and then came back out with Nanci to provide backup in all the right places. The Griffith performance started with a John Prine classic…..”Speed of the Sound of Loneliness” and moved on to a oft-performed standard…” Simple Life” which was a collaboration with long-time friend Elizabeth Cook.
The ninety minute show was packed with classic Griffith tunes like “Love at the 5 and Dime” along with plenty of commentary about Nanci’s life and beliefs. At one point, the Texas singer songwriter emphasized that she was “from” Texas and “when I tell you Rick Perry is no good…..Please Believe Me!”
Nanci spoke from the heart when relating the story of the inter-racial marriage of Mildred and Richard Loving as the inspiration behind “The Loving Kind.” She remarked that the government needed to get out of the loving business especially the Loving’s business!
When you can’t find a friend you “listen to the Radio” and last night, during this Loretta Lynn tribute song, Pete Kennedy’s musical range was highlighted with a tremendous bass solo. Other highlights included the Kate Wolf composed “Across the Great Divide” and a duet with back-stage man Bruce McKay on “Gulf Coast Highway.” The night would not have been complete without the classic Julie Gold anthem…..”From a Distance” or a rousing rendition of “Tequila after Midnight” written by Nanci’s honky-tonk songwriter idol Dee Moeller.
Probably the liveliest song of the night was “Hell No, I’m Not Alright.” The band and crew pulled out all the stops for this one. Bruce McKay returned to the stage along with crew member Phil Koffman as the “Clap Brothers” to engage the audience in a clap along, but this song was an even greater opportunity to show off the musical talents of Maura Kennedy with her stirring guitar solo on Pete’s Stratocaster.
The audience clearly loved the performance and Nanci loves to sing and talk about things she is passionate about. The KCD Theater continues to produce great acts and has become the place to go on the East side of Louisville.