Shawn Colvin has created her new tour based on her 20-year old certified platinum album, A Few Small Repairs. Celebrating older, more successful music seems to be a trend with many bands these days. Brian Wilson’s Pet Sounds Tour and Pearl Jam’s Binaural tour immediately come to mind. This tour is unusual because she is touring with a full band instead of as a solo artist. The show was a total crowd-pleaser at Tucson’s Fox Theatre on Oct. 16.
Two members of Colvin’s touring band opened the evening’s festivities. Larry Campbell and Teresa Williams, formerly of Levon Helm’s band, performed a 40-minute set of Americana at its very best. Campbell demonstrated from the very first notes on the guitar that he had an unparalleled mastery of the instrument. Williams’ bluegrass vocals were crystal clear and unique. The long-time married couple had chemistry on stage that was pure fun. They will remain on the tour for the next five weeks.
Colvin is not a stranger to Tucson. She has performed at Tucson’s Rialto theatre several times. Her earliest visits to Arizona include several appearances at the Jackson Browne Verde Valley School Benefits outside of Sedona, Arizona in the late 1980s. That bit of Arizona ambiance may have fueled her writing of the landmark album. She spoke of her love of Arizona as she started the show.
Many people assume that A Few Minor Repairs is about a divorce or a breakup. Colvin cleared up that notion when she talked about the song, “Get Out of this House.” She simply stated that it is not about a divorce. She bought her first house in Austin, Texas. It was across from a lake with beautiful hills in the background. She dedicated a room for writing. Soon after she moved into the house, she realized that she was experiencing writers’ block for an extended period of time. She described it as the “kiss of death.” The song was about buyers’ remorse.
The entire album was performed from start to finish. The band is the first band she has toured with since the original album was released 20 years ago. All of the band members are well seasoned and they remained true to the original arrangements on the album. The band members were Mike Meadows on drums and percussion, Michael Ramos on keys, Glenn Fukunaga on bass, Larry Campbell on multiple stringed instruments, and Teresa Williams provided background vocals, guitar, and Mylodica. It seemed odd that Colvins’ biggest hit was performed at the beginning of the show, but that how the track was on the original record.
Once the performance of the album was completed, there was a four-song encore. “Diamond in the Rough” was the final song of the night. It was a great show from a superb singer-songwriter. For a complete set list, please click here.