Patti Smith Gives ACL Live A Youthful and Flawless Performance Check out Some "Found Video" Here!
AUSTIN, TX- The iconic and powerful Patti Smith played Austin on Saturday, May 7th right before Mother’s Day, a celebration clouded by grief for those like myself who can no longer celebrate their progenitor. Personally, this felt like the best way to commemorate it.
At 75 years of age, Patti Smith rendered a youthful and flawless set with a full backing band including longtime collaborator Lenny Kaye.
As a poet/author, musician and visual artist, her impressive skills as a narrator and storyteller make you feel whether you’re a reader or spectator, as though you’re witnessing a piece of your own family’s history. It’s a feeling so familiar and dear that even with a clear notion of how culturally relevant she is, it still manifests as a very intimate and warm hug. She doesn’t look or sound like a super-human; Smith feels like a very complex person and that makes her presence so universally beloved and timeless.
After finishing her 4th song she addressed the crowd saying “Detroit”. To me, it seemed funny because that is the city where I saw her perform before. The audience started mumbling and she stopped. “What is it?” “What’s wrong?” “Tell me!”. Not a soul dared to correct her. How could they?.
Covers of Bob Dylan’s “The Wicked Messenger” and “One Too Many Mornings” were beautifully played. My absolute favorite songs in the set were “Pissing In a River”, “Horses”, “Ghost Dance” and most obviously “People Have The Power” which reminds me of the deep sadness surrounding the political climate and pandemic as a masked Patti and Lenny performed the song acapella on an NYC street last Election Day.