Last night, February 22, a good friend and I drove from Chicago to Milwaukee to see Kacey Musgraves live at the Pabst theatre. She delivered, she elevated and she left us feeling tight-hugged, free to just BE, and in awe of her beauty and wisdom beyond her 26 years on earth.
The Pabst theatre is a smaller venue. Unique and breathtaking on it's own. Tray ceilings, domes, chandeliers and intricacy in the ceiling, walls and musty smell set the intimacy upon your first entrance. I'd see every other concert of my life in this place.
The opening act was John and Jacob, a new and pretty unfamiliar band. Their sound was bluegrass, and old school, but relevant and fun. Hailing from Alabama, the band was surprisingly full of verve and harmony and lyrical emotional juices. My favorite song was: "I'd go back". Below. Also, loved "Me with you".
So, the magic began at 9pm....The stage cast in blue spot lights and the overwhelming smell of incense (Nag Champa) to be exact, I know this from meditation. That alone, set the stage (pun intended) for her old-soul, melodic food for the soul-show. Out she walked under bright fuchsia lights and a band dressed in bulb-lit suits, and neon cactus. Instead of donning her usual high-wasted shorts, she shimmered and shined in a red low cut tasseled(on top) gold Lamé dress. The crowd went bananas, and her beauty still out shone the dress and lights.
It needs to be mentioned that Kacey is gorgeous. Her dewy cheekbones, and tiny facial features seem almost unfair as the source of her talent and crooning. She took off her heels (adorable embroidered booties) and sang barefoot after "Keep it to yourself" and played free-spirited that way until the encore. Sharing her co-written number one HIT "Mama's broken heart" by Miranda Lambert.
From there, hearts soared, and people swayed and collectively laughed in these musical moments that felt like hanging out with your best friends around a fire. In this palpable bubble of self-effacing hope and hurt she sang: "It is what it is" as the entire crowd sang along.
She lifted the spirit and elevated our hearts with the sweetly-sung-go-stuff-it tune of 'Step Off". This, she did with a fun Bob Marley mash up of "three little birds".
The next song she played, she requested the crowd to light up their phones, and light up they did. Everyone singing together, it was the highlight of the show....
The show closed shortly after, and she returned for the Mind blowing encore. During which, she came out solo with her guitar, in a mini A-line skirt and light-up, YES LIT up cowboy boots. Here, she sang the new single (above) "Biscuits" and another new single off the untiled LP, called "Cup of Tea". Her lyrics are so poetic, and self-accepting.
The second to last song was an interactive crescendo of her number one single: "Follow your Arrow".
There are no words to describe her craft, delivery and beauty. I won't try. Instead, I will leave you with first few lyrics to her new single "Biscuits" and wait patiently for the new album.
"Taking down your neighbor, won't take you any higher, I burned my own damn finger poking someone else's fire. and I've never gotten taller making someone else feel small. If you ain't got nothing nice to say, don't say nothing at all.
Just...hoe your own row, and raise your own babies, smoke your own smoke, and grow your own daisies. Mend your own fences, and own your own crazy.
Mind your own biscuits and life will be gravy"