Live at The Royal Albert Hall
Provogue/Mascot Label Group DVD
Beth Hart has a total of twelve studio albums including several collaborations with Joe Bonamassa. Her last solo studio album “Fire On The Floor” resulted in three Blues Music nominations and her winning the 2018 BMA for Best Instrumentalist – Vocals.
Earlier this year Hart released “Live From New York” recorded at the Iridium Jazz Club. That recording included a DVD so the viewer could see the dynamic Hart in various intimate configurations. The production aired on PBS’s “Front And Center”.
Hart’s newest DVD “Live At Royal Albert Hall” features her performing in a larger concert arena. The lights are out and a lone figure appears in the darkness. As Hart makes her way to the stage the crowd is quiet in anticipation. Her burnt honey voice begins to “purr” as she opens with “As Long As I Have A Song”, singing acapella, while shaking the hands of her adoring fans. It is quite an entrance as she mesmerizes the crowd of 5200 with her career defining original.
Hart “whispers and hollers her hopes, fears and secrets” and although mostly rockin’ at times achieving an intimacy similar to that of her club show. Vocalist Hart who plays piano, acoustic guitar, and acoustic bass; is once again accompanied by Jon Nichols, electric and acoustic guitars and the rhythm section of Bob Marinelli, bass; and Bill Ransom, drums and percussion.
“Spiders in My Bed” about Hart’s early struggle with addiction first appeared on her 1996 Atlantic Records debut “Immortal”. Hart recalls “I could never sleep. I could go three or four days and stay awake, and it was just mania.” Other Highlights include “Leave The Light On” the title track to her 2003 breakthrough album. From her fifth studio album “My California” is the title track and the song “Sister Heroine”. From Hart’s 2012 album “Bang, Bang, Boom, Boom” is that title track, “Baddest Blues” and “Caught Out In The Rain” written with James House. From her last BMA winning studio album are “Baby Shot Me Down”, “Love Is A Lie” and “Picture in A Frame”. All of these were written or co-written by Hart.
Covers include Bill Withers’ “For My Friend” first recorded by Withers in 1973 on his “Live At Carnegie Hall” album. From the songwriting team of Leiber and Stoller is “Saved” the title track to La Vern Baker’s 1961 album on Atlantic Records; and “Your Heart Is As Black As Night” from Melody Joy Gardot.
The two hour performance includes twenty-three songs. The talented Hart is absolutely stunning on this fabulously produced video.