Live Review: Joe Jackson at Center Stage Theater in Atlanta, 6/24/22
As all fans of good music know, Joe Jackson is The Man. He once said, “I got the trash and you got the cash so baby we should get along fine,” but this night was all treasure. Since his 1979 debut Look Sharp! hit the eardrums of new wave fans, he has evolved and changed his stripes more times that you can count.
For his Sing, You Sinners! U.S. and European tour, Jackson is revisiting some of his greatest songs from a four-decade songbook. He hit the ground running with “One More Time,” the first track from that first album. For the second song, he jumped forward to “Big Black Cloud,” track one of his most recent studio release 2019’s Fool.
The 67-year-old Jackson went on to perform an arousing 20-song set filled with a little bit of everything from his superb career. Halfway through, he discussed doing a different cover each night of the tour, then proceeded to wow fans with a beauty with ABBA’s “Knowing Me, Knowing You.” The tour namesake, “Sing, You Sinners” was recorded by Tony Bennett in 1950, but originally written in 1930 and recorded by the Paramounteers for the film Honey. Just one example of Jackson’s curiosity with all styles of music – not to mention numerous musical eras – likely the result of winning a scholarship at 18 to study composition, piano, and percussion at London’s Royal Academy of Music.
His piano playing is front-and-center, along with that unique and recognizable voice. Rounding out Jackson’s spectacular band are his longtime bassist Graham Maby, seasoned guitarist Teddy Kumpel, and the powerful Doug Yowell on drums.
During the encore, Jackson graciously thanked the audience for showing up. “It’s a weird phenomenon on this tour where we’re mostly having full houses but there are some places where people who bought tickets actually stay away in droves…but not tonight!” The crowd loved that. He then introduced the band before launching into the incredible “You Can’t Get What You Want (Til You Know What You Want),” which is also top-notch life advice for everyone.
For the final song, Jackson said, “This song has always really been a romantic ballad and not many people realize it, so maybe after tonight they will,” then slid into a sweet version of “Steppin’ Out.”
To see The Man live or listen to some fabulously and absolutely grand music, visit the JJ website.
Categories: Live Reviews