To Cambridge, on Thursday just past, and to the Corn Exchange, to see Suzanne Vega. My one-word review: spellbinding.
I had never been to the Corn Exchange before (to be honest I’ve rarely been to a gig — especially an indoor gig — outside London these last thirty-six or so years). But it’s one of those places that feels slightly legendary to me, because I’d see it listed among the tour dates in Sounds or NME back in my youthhood.
Turns out it’s a lovely, clean, modern venue, with Old Speckled Hen on tap. We were seated in the balcony (on the balcony?), which was fine.
And as to Ms Vega: I’m not steeped in her work, so the fact that she essentially played a ‘Greatest Hits’ set was ideal for me. She even explicitly said, ‘I’m gonna play some of the well-known ones early, so people don’t worry that they won’t get them.’
This after she’d opened with ‘Marlene on the Wall’, followed by ‘Small Blue Thing’.
She had one accompanying musician, a guitarist called Gerry Leonard, who has worked with Bowie, among others. He was great, making heavy use of those sampling/looping pedals, making him sometimes sound like three or four players at once.
So, like I say, the whole thing was spellbinding.