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Belated Suzymania

Scott caught Suzy Bogguss last spring–has it really been that long?–at his favorite haunt, the Dakota in downtown Minneapolis, and wrote about the concert here. In a word, he loved it. When he learned that Suzy would be passing nearby in October at another fun venue, the State Theatre in Zumbrota, Minnesota, an hour south of the Twin Cities, he snapped up four tickets for us and our wives, only to realize that the concert, last Friday night, was on Yom Kippur. So he missed Friday’s concert, but we didn’t.

I loved it too. The State, built in 1921, is a great venue with terrific acoustics. It seats five hundred or so, I suppose, and was pretty much full. We were 40 feet from the stage, and the entire evening had an intimate feel. Suzy Bogguss, if you aren’t familiar with her music, was a pretty big country star around 20 years ago, with a platinum album and several gold ones, but over time she chose to pursue her own interests and has been absent from top 40 radio for a while. Her voice is still sensational–both beautiful and powerful.

Here she is a couple of years ago singing Outbound Plane, one of the hits from her commercial days, and an excellent song:

Suzy herself–believe me, after an evening with her you feel like you are on a first-name basis–is immensely likable. She is touring with two sidemen, a bass player and a guitar player. Her between-songs patter is funny and entirely normal; she talked a bit about her upcoming 25th wedding anniversary and her 16-year-old son. She comes across like your favorite neighbor, only with an insanely great voice. Currently, Suzy’s main interest is preserving traditional American folk music. She mixed songs from her current album, American Folk Songbook, with her old hits and covers of great country songs like Johnny Cash’s I Still Miss Someone. Someone shot this video of Suzy singing Shenandoah at Friday night’s Zumbrota concert. The video isn’t high quality–no offense, maryj221–but it gives an idea of how good she sounded:

After the concert, Suzy stayed around to chat with fans, sell CDs and sign copies of the book that goes with her American folk album. It was a very fun evening. Finally, purely as a bonus, here is a young Suzy singing Someday Soon:

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