Live at the Ryman
By Debra Akins, contributing writer, gmclife.com
While still in his teens in the mid 1990s, Jonny Lang exploded onto the national scene with a combination of highly developed blues guitar chops and a powerful voice that rivaled some musicians twice his age. Now, 15 years and a half-dozen studio albums later, he has evolved into a seasoned musician and a highly-touted showman capable of delivering powerful live performances riddled with inspired, spontaneous moments in front of his audiences.
In 2006, Lang released his gospel-infused, GRAMMY-winning album Turn Around, and now he has returned with his first-ever live recording, Live at the Ryman on Concord Records. Nearly half the songs on the live album come from the acclaimed Turn Around project, including that album's title song, along with "One Person at a Time," "Bump In the Road," "Don't Stop For Anything" and "Thankful."
"No matter what kind of person you are, or what your background is, or what your situation is, hopefully one of these songs is going to connect to you," he says. "I've seen how music can give people the strength to change. After years of witnessing that, it's become more of a focus for me to write songs that really count."
And there couldn't be a better setting in which to showcase Lang's talent than the stage of Nashville's historic Ryman Auditorium. There's no question that this musician is at his best when he's playing in front of a live audience, able to improvise with his band (who are also exceptionally talented) and shine with a musical proficiency that may only be matched by the talent found in that particular city (some of Music City's finest were no doubt in the audience that night).
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