The Reviews Are In

Nanci Griffith's Kerrville Performance

Reports from folks who were there...

Mike Cogliandro ( and David Grant ( present a tag-team review, woven together by your editor. Nanci closed the Sunday, May 26 show at the Kerrville Folk Festival, which was running very late by the time she and the band took the stage. Take it away, Mike and David.

Mike: About 12:30 am, Nanci begins her set. The crowd was very excited. It was probably the biggest crowd Quiet Valley Ranch has ever had. There were people everywhere! There must have been 8-9,000 people. And, they all were there for about six hours! Nanci was a bit tense in the beginning, but after about 10 minutes she loosened up a lot.

David: Nanci was joined by an almost-full-moon orchestra -- James Hooker, Pat McInerney, Ron de la Vega, Doug Lancio and Lee Satterfield. They performed an abbreviated set, lasting about 70-75 minutes. The set was a fairly typical FLYER tour one (she didn't do anything new), opening with "Love at the Five and Dime" and continuing with many favorites, including "Trouble in the Fields," "These Days in an Open Book," "Outbound Plane," "The Flyer," "From a Distance," "Well...All Right," "Gulf Coast Highway," "Goin' Back to Georgia," and I think a few others.

Mike: The funniest thing that happened was Nanci's finger picks kept flyin' off her fingers. At one point, she started to laugh in the middle of one song. It was very funny as she tried to control herself and Lee Satterfield and James were no help as they were struggling to stop themselves from laughing. Nanci had to play sans a couple of picks and she had a short, awkward time adjusting, but she continued with vim and vigor and almost never lost a beat. Between songs Nineyear would rush out and be seen picking up picks.

Nanci Griffith and FriendsThe highlight of Nanci's set was "It's A Hard Life Wherever You Go." Nanci called out to Sara Hickman, Allen Damron, Lucinda Williams, Lee's hubby, and a whole bunch of other people including Rob Schrull's oldest daughter, NanciNet's own Kirsten Schrull. She was escorted by Allen Damron,(Allen was also there for Nanci when she was starting out.) At one point, during the song Nanci grabbed Kirsten and her mike stand and pulled Kirsten closer to her, as Kirsten and Allen were off to the far right- now she was center stage alongside the Nance. And although Kirsten started out quiet-like, when she did her solo bit she sounded like a pro! What a voice on that cute kid! Where did that come from!? :) Congrats again Kirsten!

Kirsten ShrullDavid: Not only did Kirsten sing along with Nanci, but she got a solo line -- "I was a child of the '90s, when dreams could be held through TV." She did a terrific job!

Nanci did a couple more encores ("The Wing and the Wheel" and "This Heart") before the evening was over. When it was all said and done, it was 1:45 a.m., and we all headed back to Camp NanciNet. When everyone was there, I took some group photos, which will be posted on the Web sometime soon. I promise to deliver new retinas to each of you, too.

NanciEric Hay (Eric_Hay@BAYLOR.EDU)
Nanci was magic. She and James' duet of Gulf-Coast Highway was dead on. She took us through the range of emotions, from the git-yoself-down'n'boogie of This Heart and Well Alright to the almost-crying voice crack in Tecumseh Valley. The most poignant moment of the evening, though, was It's A Hard Life Wherever You Go. Nanci was sharing the stage with a backup choir of incredible talent, but the audience went soft over her young guest Kirsten Schrull, who was sure to let nanci and the other several thousand of us know that she was eleven and not twelve, as nanci had mistakenly announced.

Nanci and James' hatChuck Duffield (
Nanci's show........what a thrill to see her amoung all her friends. Mike and David already gave you the low-down, but let me add this: Nanci seemd really happy to have the larger part of her band back together again. She told the story of how at age 15 her father took her to see Townes VanZandt who played Techumsa Valley, a song that touched her deeply as her middle name is Caroline and the song was about a woman named Carolina (please listen to the song again) which made her decide that it was time to do something about her life. When she reached the part where Carolina's father died, she became very emotional and teared, then again when Carolina died, she really had a hard time continueing. Hooker was singing with her, and at the end of the song, she went over to him (Hooker) and reached out her hand to him - which he placed in both his hands and he smiled and nodded to Nanci as if to say "It's Okay". It touched the whole audience and left many a damp eye. She followed up with singing Outbound Plane which was a big pick-me-up for everyone, and by mid-song we were all smiling again and had put our hankies away. Nanci was the only person for the weekend to receive and give a second ovation.
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