We started the production cycle by charging through flooded streets to see Brandi Carlile and Gregory Alan Isakov play to a sold out Tower Theatre. We arrived in time to see the bulk of Isakov's set and it reinforced our belief that everyone should check out his Iron and Wine style of folk.
Carlile then took the stage, accompanied by her acoustic band and launched into a set that included plenty of new material and radio hits, as well as a pair of Beatles covers. Carlile didn't refrain from unleashing her gritty-yet-powerful pipes on the historic Tower as she did on her hit "The Story" near the end of the 90-plus-minute set. The Seattle-area native spent plenty of time storytelling from the stage as the Tower's resident hoard of cougars engaged in a game of "Which Chardonnay Drenched Woman Can Yell the Wittiest Comment and Embarrass Everyone." But still, Sound Check gives Carlile two thumbs up and bestows on her endless street cred.
Saturday saw us out at the Sisters Rodeo, basking in occasional sun bursts while taking in what was literally our first rodeo, which was nice given that we can now say our favorite folkseyism "this ain't our first rodeo" and mean it. We enjoyed the bucking broncos, a bloodied stable hand (probably not the official title), and surprisingly, quite a bit of rap music playing over the PA system.
To wrap up the week we made it down to the Les Schwab Amphitheater for the kickoff to Summer Sundays featuring Reed Thomas Lawrence and some not-so-summer weather with an almost shockingly large contingent of free concertgoers, given that black clouds loomed close. As Lawrence and his band cranked out one poppy sunshine gem after the other, giving plenty of shoutouts to thehometown crowd, it started to rain, but we just pulled up the hood and hunkered down. After all, it ain't summer yet, and this ain't our first rodeo either.