Pepsi Cola Roadhouse, Burgettstown, PA March 5, 2004
After country legend Loretta Lynn won two Grammys for her recent
genre-bending CD, it's easy to forgive her the stage oddities that
occurred Saturday at Pepsi-Cola Roadhouse.
her December concert following back surgery, the 69-year-old Lynn
said she would have "crawled" to the Roadhouse if
she had to despite lingering discomfort compounded by an illness.
band, three backup singers and The Lynns, her twin daughters Peggy
and Patsy Lynn, warmed up the crowd before the Grand Ole Opry star,
in a pink sequinned ball gown, was greeted with a standing ovation.
Lynn opened with Shel Silverstein's "Hey Loretta" before
resting in a plush chair at center stage and prompting the audience
to call out their favorite songs.
began to falter, however, when Lynn couldn't remember the words
to most of the requests. While she sang at least parts of almost
20 songs -- including "When the Tingle Becomes a Chill," "Blue
Kentucky Girl," "The Pill" and "One's on the Way" -- many of the
songs got only as far as a verse and a chorus before fizzling out
altogether. Daughter Peggy Lynn sat at the back of the stage doubling
her mother's vocals and filling in the missing words.
Jack White, her partner and producer on the new "Van
Lear Rose" CD, Lynn made it through the album's "Portland, Oregon" and "Family
Tree." But the show soon spiraled out of control. Backing vocalists
rescued Lynn by standing in front of her and singing covers, and
The Lynns returned with a couple of impromptu songs, while Lynn sat
awkwardly in the chair. After an uncomfortable hour, she was prompted
to sing her namesake song, "Coal Miner's Daughter," and was finally
whisked off stage.
Gashouse Annie, fronted by songwriter Shirley Dragovich, opened
with a solid set of original country songs from the band's CD, "He's
a Rambler." Although the CD has been largely ignored by local
radio, Gashouse proved yet again that they are one of the area's
best artists, deserving of much more attention.
-- Review by John Hayes,
Post-Gazette staff writer