Concert Review

Lucinda Williams brings joy to Holmfirth

Lucinda Williams played Holmfirth Picturedrome

On 2nd March, Lucinda Williams played Holmfirth Picturedrome, the third of her three UK dates on her European Tour and – since the tour was so short – I made sure I was able to go to all three.  Supported by L.A. Edwards and her band the Buick 6, the tour saw them play Indigo at O2 in London, Birmingham Town Hall, and the aforementioned Holmfirth Picturedrome.  Whilst the sets were similar, there were noticeable differences – especially for someone like me, who loves Righteously – including the feel of the venues, with only the latter having a significant portion of the audience standing.

Photo Credit: Claire Stones

L.A Edwards started their set launching straight into Now You Know, and the band sounded great.  This venue suited them better, the audience was more energetic and, although there were the usual few people who were talking during the support set, there was more participation from them rather than what seemed to be respectful listening previously. Truthfully – and don’t ask me how – they sound better when you are standing up amongst a crowd of people (even if, in my case, that was pushed up against the stage).

It would appear Luke – the L.A. Edwards of L.A. Edwards – could feel the difference in the crowd, and switched up the setlist – adding in Hi Rite Now instead of the planned second song.  This has a different vibe to it than the others they played and seemed to go down well with the crowd, doing a great job of warming them up.

Photo Credit: Claire Stones

The next few songs were from their older releases and included some great “solos” from both Jay on lead guitar and Jerry on drums – Luke’s older and younger brother respectively – along with wonderful harmonies.  As is always the case when you see L.A. Edwards live, their harmonies at the start of Day I Die are the highlight of their set.  Not that there’s anything wrong with the rest of the songs, there’s just something about this one – written for their mother – that hits a little harder than the rest.

With Landon Pigg on guitar and keyboard, and Jesse Dorman on bass, the band performed a brilliant set, the crowd enjoying it.  Finishing with their latest single, Good Luck, they did their job preparing the way for Lucinda Williams.  They supported her on her European tour last year, as well, and it’s obvious why she keeps asking them back.  Their music works well with hers and they’re a band I’m looking forward to seeing them headline their shows.

For those not aware, in November 2020 Lucinda Williams had a stroke, impairing her left side.  If it weren’t for Lucinda being helped onto the stage and no longer playing guitar, you’d think it was just age.  Her sets are still nearly two hours long, her voice just a little more gravelly.

Photo Credit: Claire Stones

Lucinda started as she meant to go on, with Let’s Get The Band Back Together from her latest album, Stories from a Rock N Roll Heart, and it was a great way to bring the audience in.  Following this with Can’t Let Go and West Memphis, the crowd was delighted by the song choices.  

Lucinda moved back and forth through her back catalogue, going from Those Three Days from 2003’s World Without Tears, to Stolen Moments from her latest release, and then back to Fruits of My Labour – also from World Without Tears – via an unrecorded song, Blind Pearly Brown.  The moving around was loved by the crowd, and Williams sounded great – even on songs recorded 25-plus years ago.  

The stories that accompanied songs like Dust – a poem of her father’s she put to music; Car Wheels On A Gravel Road – life seen through a child’s eyes; and The Ghosts of Highway 20 – influenced by her realisation much of her childhood was lived around Highway 20, appeared interesting to the crowd and were a bonus to the nearly two-hour set.  If you’ve read Williams’ autobiography, or seen her recently (or, like me, on all three of the UK dates), not all of this information would be new to you, but there’s something about the way it’s told and the enjoyment she’s having on stage that means you listen to every word.

Photo Credit: Claire Stones

Lucinda’s band – Buick 6 – which, on this tour, consisted of Butch Norton on drums, David Sutton on bass, Doug Pettibone on guitar and pedal steel, and Marc Ford on guitar and slide guitar – sounded great and, although a shame Lucinda is no longer playing on stage, they did an amazing job and the instrumentals were nearly as good as the singing.

Photo Credit: Claire Stones

I have now seen two Lucinda shows before 2020 and two since, and truthfully nothing is lacking from the later ones – unless you are truly hell-bent on seeing Lucinda play guitar.  If you’re a fan of her music – or, truthfully, even if you just love a few of her songs – I would advise you to see her perform live.  It’s an entertaining evening, and witnessing Lucinda Williams singing her songs is a joy.

L.A. Edwards is due to release their new album later this year, with headline tour dates confirmed for Germany in July. Further European dates are due to be released soon.

More photos can be found here.


Lucinda Williams

Let’s Get The Band Back Together
Can’t Let Go
West Memphis
Those Three Days
Stolen Moments
Blind Pearly Brown
Fruits of my Labor
Lake Charles
Car Wheels on a Gravel Road
The Ghosts of Highway 20
Rock N Roll Heart
Out of Touch
Honey Bee
Takin’ Care of Business

L.A. Edwards

Now You Know
Hi Rite Now
Leaving Los Angeles
St Augustine/Wildflowers
If I Had You
Day That I Die
Good Luck

Lucinda Williams Online
Website | Instagram | Facebook | YouTube | TikTok | Spotify | Apple Music

L.A Edwards Online
Website | Instagram | Facebook | YouTube | TikTok | Spotify | Apple Music

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