Let Me Entertain You: Wanda Jackson @ World Cafe Live 2.22.11

There was an air of disbelief when it was announced that Wanda Jackson, the Queen Of Rock herself, would be releasing a new album for 2011. Not that she’s been at all dormant since her iconic early days, but a comeback was still a surprising notion. Sure, it helped that Jack White made The Party Ain’t Over a dynamic, eclectic offering, but the true indication that Wanda had returned was when a tour was announced. Rock n’ roll fans of all ages poured into World Café Live to catch a glimpse of one of the genre’s pioneers who, at 73, can still kick some serious ass.

The set was a kind of live greatest hits, with Jackson tearing through countless signature tunes like “Mean Mean Man” and “Funnel Of Love.” A few selections from The Party Ain’t Over included “Shakin’ All Over” and “You Know I’m No Good,” which was impressive to hear rearranged for a four-piece band without a horn section. As she mentioned in regards to her new album, Wanda’s performance was a showcase for all the different points of her career. Starting in country, moving to rock, then back to country, then gospel; Wanda has tackled them all and brought that variety to her show. Her backing group, The Lustre Kings, gave Jackson plenty of room to dominate the spotlight. This show belonged to Wanda, but she was plenty willing to share the fun.

Every few songs, Jackson would pause to share a story. Her tales of her relationship with Elvis Presley and how she stumbled into being a rock n’ roll singer had the audience completely captivated. Though she’s been performing for nearly 60 years, Jackson’s stage presence shows off a graciousness and humility despite her vast influence. Friendly and conversational, Jackson clearly considers herself very fortunate to have led such an impressive career. The crowd, the opening act and even the Lustre Kings themselves were all overjoyed to be in Wanda’s presence. And Jackson looked like she was just as happy to be with all of us.

Click the picture at the top of this post to see more pictures of Wanda Jackson in concert!!

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~ by E. on February 24, 2011.

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