[ Live Review] The Blind Boys of Alabama

blind boys of alabama-4Queensland Performing Arts Centre
March 31 :

The Blind Boys of Alabama have been bringing music to the world for the better part of seven decades, winning multiple Grammy awards over the years.
The aim of the Blind Boys is to being joy through music to fans of the Gospel genre. However you don’t have be a fan of Gospel to enjoy the Blind Boys and their soulful voices. However if you are here to see anything else other that gospel music then
you are in the wrong place” we’re informed.

Opening with a cover of  The Impressions  ‘ People get ready’  the Blind Boys take turns singing the lead during each song with their voices ranging from deep bass to alto to a nice soprano to blend together and harmonize beautifully.

Taking the audience through a journey of soul music and gospel the Blind Boys bring a lot of joy to the audience as they dance in unison, dressed like Southern gentlemen in matching beige suits. Its refreshing to see singers able to showcase talent without the need for sexual reference, innuendo or inappropriate language.

At first the seated crowd is somewhat reserved, but as the evening progresses people begin to loosen up and move around as they sing numbers like ” I shall not be moved”  and ” God Put a Rainbow in the Cloud” .

Towards the end of the evening they change things up by covering the popular ” Amazing Grace” by singing it to the tune of “House of the Rising Sun”. At first the crowd seem confused as they try to pick the tune, but as everyone warms to it the song becomes familiar and a whole new version of a popular classic.

When founding member and lead vocalist Jimmy Carter is assisted down into the crowd to experience the sensation of being surrounded by fans it is a rather touching moment. People come to the stage to touch him, grabbing and kissing him. It’s a really nice way for Jimmy to feel the crowd even though he can’t see them.

Wrapping up the evening with ” If I had a Hammer” the Blind Boys have bought an evening of soul and lifted spirits at times resembling a Church revival. It’s been a joyous occasion for all able to witness the event.

 

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