Sonny Landreth and Cindy Cashdollar, two legendary slide guitarists, played an intimate concert in The Lewis A. Swyer Theatre at The Egg in Albany on Friday January 31st. The less than 450 person crowd was surprisingly loud as Sonny Landreth took the stage to perform the first few songs solo, just a man and his guitars. With such small venue, every seat had a perfect view of Landreth as he sat down and began the show with “Next of Kindred Spirit.” His fingers easily covered the frets as he slid all over the neck of guitar with a complex simplicity. He rocked the guitar in his arms with care and a laid back attitude that you’d find on a front porch on a warm summer day. “Broken Hearted Road” introduced lyrics full of sorrow with sharp chords that cut right through you. There was complete silence in the crowd as the theatre was filled with the mind blowing humid riffs.
Cindy Cashdollar was greeted by Landreth and the rest of the audience for the duration of the set, and thanked everyone especially Sonny for the thrill of performing together. Upstate’s own Cashdollar brought a raw and edgier sound to the southern blues rock of the evening, her own unique style of danger. Both musicians constantly exchanged smiles throughout the show, adding to the relaxed and friendly atmosphere of the round room. Landreth encouraged the audience to “let the spirit take you” as they went into “Cherry Ball Blues”, an upbeat blues funk song. “Key to the Highway” a cover song often performed by Eric Clapton, was described as Landreth’s own personal theme song complete with escalating rocking high notes. Cindy Cashdollar frequently smacked her guitar with graceful force and a toe tapping rhythm. Landreth seemed pleased with the show mentioning that they covered all the basics, happy blues, sad blues and everything in between before closing the set with Robert Johnson’s “Walkin Blues” with long drawn out chord attitude from Cashdollar.
This was the first show of The American Roots & Branches series being hosted at The Egg and it set the bar high for the rest of the year. Both Sonny Landreth and Cindy Cashdollar are extraordinary musicians who make an unstoppable duo, redefining the blues with southern charm.
Sonny Landreth Solo: Next of Kindred Spirit, 2 Shuffle, Here & After, Broken Hearted Road, South of 1 – 10
Sonny Landreth & Cindy Cashdollar: Blues Attack, Cherry Ball Blues, Key to the Highway, Hell at Home, World Away, All About You, It Hurts me too, Prodigal Son, Walking Blues
Encore: Bayou Teche