Well, I got back from the Anne Murray concert about an hour ago, and it was a really fun show! It was at C.Y. Stephens Auditorium here in Ames which is the mid-sized venue at the Iowa State Center. It's where a lot of the touring Broadway musicals end up playing, Anna has her dance recital there. It probably seats around 2500 people, so it's not like a big arena where major draws are going to play. Consequently, it's really a fun place to see concerts because there isn't a bad seat in the house. The performers don't look like tiny bugs running around on a stage and it's a pretty intimate setting.
Anne was pretty much sold out -- there were only isolated seats empty. As I suspected, she played a lot of her late 70s-early 80s crossover hits. "Shadows In The Moonlight," "I Just Fall In Love Again," "You Needed Me," & "Could I Have This Dance" (complete with audience sing-a-long) were all featured rather prominently. She also played a lot of standards as that's apparently what she's been recording these days. Her latest album is all songs written before 1940 and she sang a lot of those songs.
She pretty much knew that she was a nostalgia act, and played it for all it was worth. Her self-depracating humor was great -- that's one of the things I love about going to these shows where the artists are a little bit past their prime. They aren't afraid to make fun of themselves because they have absolutely nothing to lose. She's not exactly a spring chicken anymore (she's 60 years old) so there were a lot of age jokes. She talked about how she had glasses in every room in her house and still can't find a pair when she needs one. And she looked pretty good for being my mom's age. I mean, she reminded me a lot of Katherine Chancellor from "The Young & The Restless" only without all the bangles and baubles. But that frosted hair! What was that all about?
The crowd was very much a geriatric crowd. I'd say that the average age was probably 55 or so, putting me well in the tail end of the bell curve. But having said that, it seemed appropriate that I was seeing her perform, and in Ames, the place where I walked around the Iowa State campus listening to her music on my Walkman 16 years ago.
And for those of you who may not have ever heard Anne Murray, here's an MP3, available for a limited time. It's her cover of the Monkees' "Daydream Believer."
Anne Murray -- Daydream Believer
Buy Anne Murray CDs.