“I normally have my roadies do this” quips Kim Richey as she arrives and fumbles with her guitar lead, setting the tone for an intimate, folksy evening more akin to being in a friend’s living room than a music venue, even one as warm and small as the Café. The audience are largely long term fans and given that Richey played in Birmingham only a few weeks ago supporting Gretchen Peters it’s good to see a solid crowd of them for her own gig.
There are as many stories as songs: how she missed the filming for ‘Pin A Rose’ from her latest outing ‘Edgeland’ and how good the finished video is (it is), a laugh out loud tale of how the subject of ‘Hello Old Friend’ was once in the audience when she played it, together with his wife (‘good old what’s-her-name’) and more. ‘Edgeland’ gets a fair airing, which as it’s up there with her best work delights one and all. ‘Chase Wild Horses’ is the pick of the new songs although ‘Your Dear John’ and the aforementioned ‘…Rose’ runs it close.
As she hits the home straight she delivers a purple patch from the 90s: ‘Those Words We Said’, ‘I’m Alright’ (complete with audience sing-along, “best in the UK but not as good as Pittsburgh”) and ‘Straight As The Crow Flies’ and then encores with a beautiful version of ‘Sunday Morning Coming Down’. It was clear from the audience reaction that two forty-five minute sets were not nearly enough and when she says she’ll be back in the late autumn everyone in the room cheers and you just know they’ll all be there. This reviewer certainly will, as Richey is a class act and this was an outstanding gig.