|Caroline Aiken - Atlanta,
Live at Harmon Brewing Company - Tacoma, WA
By Stacy Emerson and Pat Ferris
ally in the free-music movement has been Stacy
Emerson of the Tacoma Reporter.
Last week, (at Stacy's insistence) I attended a special acoustic concert with Caroline Aiken from Atlanta, GA. Stacy had written a review on Caroline that she sent me, which motivated me to meet Caroline in person.
Lean, Clean, Guitar Queen rips T-town!
Caroline Aikens traveling companions are a six-string Canadian Seagull, a Yari Alvarez twelve-string, and a pocket full of plastic dobro finger picks. Her destination is Any Audience USA, and her fuel is pure-grain guts.
A veteran visitor to our area with 4 self released CDs and a fifth on the way, Caroline has shared sidewalks and stages with many of local historic figures, and the repeated invitations to showcase NW festivals like Bumbershoot has kept her Georgia roots stretched across the country for years. Known for her extraordinary ability to jaw-drop a crowd with her monster-truck powerful performances, Caroline credits her sound to a combination of Elixir custom strings, electric pickups, and the finger pickin tricks she learned while hangin with Baby Gramps some time ago.
The relationship that exists between Caroline and her guitars becomes apparent as she sways her artful pendulum from her intricate and masterfully sensitive side, then, on the counter-swing, delivers hot-blooded thundering rhythms and riffs that fill every spot in a room. Her ultra-sizzling voice and use of dynamics borders on eroticism and sets her apart from other solo-performers. The affect is astounding. I've learned that less is more, I've learned that quiet spots can scream very loudly. says Caroline. She should know...Caroline has successfully earned her living as a professional musician for well over a decade, playing along side the Indigo Girls, Bonnie Raitt, Muddy Waters, John Prine, Art Garfunkle, John Hammond Jr., Arlow Guthrie, and more. Shes also made a name for herself with her National workshops; "Zen and the Art of Performance", "Songwriting in Your Sleep", and Unorthodox Guitar Work, and has received numerous critical accolades
I attended the show and was thoroughly impressed with Caroline. There is always a certain presence between true professionals and those striving for that level of musicianship. I'm not sure if it is the technique of the artists musical skills, or if it is the way they command the audience's attention. Either way, Caroline is a dynamite entertainer and one worth catching when she is in your town.
She is currently in England on tour, but will be back in the States in the next couple weeks. I'm hoping to catch her at the Kerrville Folk Festival in Texas this summer as well as Seattle's Bumbershoot, where she will be a returning bumbershoot veteran.
For more information, visit her site at http://www.carolineaiken.com