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Beth Hart

© Tranquil Soul Photography

Cambridge Corn Exchange

Hart has Fire and a whole lotta Soul…

Beth Hart entered Cambridge Corn Exchange through the side door and right into the heart of the audience smiling, sassy, sexy and sultry with a voice to die for and a show like no other. She wandered through the auditorium, singing ‘Don’t Explain’, until she took her rightful place on stage.

She is a powerhouse of blues, jazz, rock and gospel all rolled into one, with a voice that has been compared to many, but in truth is totally unique. She may have been influenced by her idols, but she stands shoulder to shoulder alongside them in her own right. The mould has been broken when it comes to this lady.

Her range goes from purity, to down right dirty, to that incredible gritty roar that is so controlled. And therein lies the beauty of Beth Hart, you never know what’s coming next!  From a rocky blues number like ‘Fat Man’, where she prowls the stage in total control, to sitting at her candlelit piano, talking openly about her insecurities, neediness & the man she loves, whilst captivating the crowd with ‘Take It Easy On Me’, ‘Leave The Light On’  and ‘As Long As I Have A Song’.  Beth Hart doesn’t just write, play and sing music, she feels and breaths it and so do her fans. Her performance is second to none, from visceral and vulnerable to powerful, playful and personal, we’re all on this ride.

Backed by Jon Nichols (guitar), Bob Marinelli (bass) & Bill Ransom (drums) this is a tight outfit, musically and vocally. During the course of the evening you see the extent of Hart’s accomplished musicianship; piano, acoustic guitar and acoustic bass.

Now on the UK leg of her Fire on the Floor tour it’s no surprise that she is playing to sell out houses.  Every show is a little different; Miss Hart, in her own words “Likes to mix it up” especially, the setlist she tell us.  From early songs like ‘Spiders In My Bed’ (Immortal), ‘Hiding Underwater’  and ‘Broken And Ugly’ (Leave the Light On)  ‘Better Man’ and ‘The Ugliest House On The Block’ (Bang, Bang, Boom, Boom) to a gorgeous cover of Etta James ‘A Sunday Kind of Love’ and the newer Leonard Cohen inspired ‘Love Gangster’ (Fire on the Floor) it is one hell of a performance…

And just when you think she could not possibly give any more, she blasts it out of the ballpark with an absolutely mesmerising encore of ‘Caught Out In The Rain’.

It was all over too soon, and she deserved every standing ovation. The audience were certainly left wanting more.

Opening for Beth Hart  and performing an acoustic set were The Kris Barras Band. These guys are well worth seeing and I look forward to catching them again. It was nice to see so many people watch the support act and they certainly set the tone for the evening.