Live Reviews

  Bonnie Bishop live at Cafe Drummond in Aberdeen

If I remember correctly, the redoubtable Ry Cooder did a song about the girls from Texas and, just as that very thought entered the vacuum that is my mind, I remembered Bonnie Bishop was playing here in Aberdeen. Bonnie Bishop, you see, is originally from Texas although she has adopted, no doubt for sound commercial reasons, Nashville as her normal place of residence.

Tonight, however, she’s in the here and now in the greyest city in the whole wide world and she seems determined to bring sunshine into our lives. After all, she has written a Grammy nominated song for Bonnie Raitt and, judging from the rest of her set tonight, she might well be in line for some more time in the spotlight. She has the mark of a proper songwriter and that fact is soon confirmed by the illumination of an emotionally charged “Best Songs Come From Broken Hearts” and an aggressively acoustic version of “Keep On Using Me”.

Her voice, let us not forget, is one of character with the whiskey breath of past misbehaviour bringing that certain authenticity to her own words but, and here was the unexpected right turn, Bonnie Bishop – as the singer rather than the songwriter – positively lip glossed a cover of “Natural Woman” into nothing less her own too. If I had a hat then I would surely have taken it off for that righteously convincing reinvention of an anthem.

With the proof now laid bare before my ears, it only remained for my eyes to confirm the fact that Bonnie Bishop is indeed the kind of woman who wears boots all summer long. You can take the girl out of Texas but you can’t take Texas out of the girl. Amen to that!

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