It seems, almost without fail, when you read about Justin Townes Earle, people write about ghosts and shadows. I didn’t see a single ghost or shadow last night. I don’t think anyone else did either. Enough said.
Earle hit the stage at the Rev Room backed by a very adept four-piece band that included drums, stand-up bass, electric guitar and pedal steel guitar. Earle played acoustic guitar the entire night. He claimed that this was the first time he had played live with a band in 10 years. I’m not sure about that, but that is what the man said. Notably absent from the line up was fiddle player Amanda Shires. Earle kicked it off with a couple of songs from his new album, “Nothing is Going to Change the Way I Feel About You,” due out later this month on Bloodshot Records. First up was “Passing Through Memphis in the Rain,” providing a little tip of the hat to us Arkies, even if the lyric is not all that flattering: “…got to keep that hammer to the floor until I am clear outta Arkansas.” Earle then launched into “Look the Other Way.” “One More Night in Brooklyn” was up next, and this familiar song had a good many folks in the crowd singing right along and shaking and swaying to its groove. Several more new songs made up the first set.
More after the jump, plus video of “Passing Through Memphis in the Rain.”