A lot has been written about the power of a lone musician to pick up a guitar and make an audience believe in something.
It’s one thing to invoke that image and conjure up a singer-songwriter in the mold of Bob Dylan or James Taylor. It’s another thing entirely to feel physically transported to another time and place in the presence of a quiet master who has lived enough life and picked the right words to break down the mechanics of love and loss with authority.
Australian Paul Kelly strummed his way through an evening at The Hamilton in Washington, DC, last Thursday to do just that. A man of casual gravitas, Kelly himself occasionally quipped he was about to share yet another song about a failed relationship.