It’s hard to say whether four different artists were too much or not enough for Friday night’s lineup at Charlotte’s Skyla Credit Union Amphitheatre. The murderer’s row of Trombone Shorty, Yola, Mavis Staples and Robert Randolph was exciting to see on paper, but short sets by a few of the featured artists left fans wanting more.
Robert Randolph for only 20 minutes? Some of his jams in the House of God Church, where he was trained as a pedal steel guitarist, can last longer than that. Mavis Staples for half an hour? At 83 years old, the legendary singer deserves as much time as she wants.
Perhaps after entertaining crowds for over 70 years, a succinct set is just what the icon does want. We can’t know, all we know is that nobody would have complained had she spent more time onstage during Friday night’s show.
Mercifully, Yola and Trombone Shorty each got enough time to truly showcase their talents. Yola impressed with her soulful, effortless vocals while Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews and his band Orleans Avenue brought a N’awlins party to the Queen City.
The beauty of a tour kickoff show like the one we got at Skyla is getting fresh energy from each artist involved. The downside is that those artists don’t have time to gel, sharpen the rough edges and put together plenty of collaborations during other performers’ sets.
I can only wonder what might happen down the road. By the time they reach New York in September, this lineup will be firing on all cylinders.
Be sure to check out Queen City Nerve’s Soundwave, Charlotte’s most comprehensive live music listing, so you don’t miss out on any shows or concerts coming up. And hell, if you’re looking for something else to do, you can check out our events page as well, which runs the gamut of things to do in Charlotte. You don’t ever have to be bored again. You can check out more of Jeff’s pics and live reviews here.
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