Lucinda Williams at Celebrate Brooklyn

Was it my imagination, or was Lucinda Williams at Celebrate Brooklyn in Prospect Park last night just a little bit “off”? A friend and I braved the on-and-off rain to be there, but it felt like Lucinda herself was not there — at least not at the beginning. Her speech — the few times she did speak — was mumbled and garbled and difficult to hear. The vocals and music seemed somehow distant and mechanical — almost phoned in. Just as we were thinking about leaving early, something changed. Lucinda seemed to come alive. We could hear her clearly when she spoke, and she and the band just got hotter and hotter, culminating with the rocking cover songs she played as encores. (Lucinda Williams playing The Clash? Hell yes!) We were glad we stayed for the whole show, but it was kind of a strange experience and had us speculating all night as to what was going on. Drugs? Booze? Nerves? Who knows? We love her regardless. Jason Walker opened the evening’s shows and he was worth attending in his own right. What a voice! (And anyone who worked with Robert Wilson and Philip Glass and toured with Einstein on the Beach is aces in my book!)

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