Jonny Lang at The Cabot – Beverly, MA

Photos and Review by Robert McDonald
Show Photos HERE
Jonny Lang brought his style of rock, blues and soulful music to the Cabot on the North Shore of Boston Saturday night.  Jonny opened the show with “Blew Up (The House),” a song from his latest release, 2013’s Fight For My Soul then “Don’t Stop (For Anything),” an ode to his Motown influences, from 2006’s Turn Around.
The set included a great mix of Jonny’s music throughout his 20 year career, which is incredible to think when you realize that he is barely in his 35th year.   Showing his early blues roots he performed songs like “A Quitter Never Wins” and covered Muddy Water’s “Forty Days and Forty Nights.”
The night was like a musical journey through his life because Jonny wears it on his sleeves and releases it through his music.  He is one of those rare musicians that gets in to his set and seems to relive the emotion of the experiences that influence his music.   As anyone in attendance could attest, experiencing his performances is like walking through that journey with him.
As a man that has battled alcoholism and drug abuse, he has transformed his life through Christianity and paid homage towards the end of the show with “That Great Day” a gospel-inspired song of hope.  Not to let the diehards down he then quickly transitioned in to a funk-filled rendition of “We Are The Same”.
The night ended in fitting fashion where Jonny broke out the acoustic for the first time of the night for the encore starting with “Breakin’ Me” and returning to his electric to close with a flourish sending the crowd home with a raucous rendition of “Lie to Me”.  Although this was my first time to catch Jonny live, it will not be my last.  I left that night with a greater appreciation for one of the Blues rockers alive.
For those who aren’t familiar with the Cabot, it was built in 1920s for vaudeville shows and silent movies.  It served as a movie theater for a half century until 1972 when it was purchased by the Le Grand David and his own Spectacular Magic Company.  Where for 36 years it was home to the famous magic show and movies until it closed in 2013.  It was then purchased and reopened in 2014 as a performing arts center.  This was the first show that I had attended at the now 850 seat theater, but the place was a beautiful venue and the acoustics were awesome.  If you are looking to take in an intimate show, I would highly recommend enjoying your favorite artist at the Cabot, you will not be disappointed.

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