Black Lillies at Cat's Cradle Back Room (Carrboro, NC, Nov. 25, 2014)
Not a full scale review but just some comments on a wonderful 90-minute set from one of my favorite roots bands, The Black Lillies from Knoxville, Tn. First, you can tell these folks have been real road warriors since 2009 as they have a polished stage show that include many of their favorites from their CD's but also some wonderful impromtu adjustments to set list to bring in songs that are requested by audience. Savvy musicians, led by lead singer Cruz Contreras. They even closed the show with harmony singer Trisha Gene Brady leading a conga line through the audience to the strains of the soul anthem "Love Train". They also usually throw in the Band's "The Shape I'm In" to their set. Highlights included crowd favorites such as "Two Hearts Down", "All This Living", and an extended jam of "Runaway Freeway Blues". Cruz is an amazing performer and bandleader, playing acoustic guitar, mandolin, electric guitar, electric bass, and piano during the course of the show with some wonderful Jerry Lee Lewis keyboard action on keyboards. The band clearly knows a lot of songs from many genres including country, gospel, blues, rock and roll. In a touching moment, they honored a request for a gospel song with the three vocalists out front with two acoustic guitars. They are road hogs so they will be in your area sometime.