ALISON KRAUSS Reschedules June 19th Show in St. Louis!!!!

I am sitting at my computer in my cubicle, getting prepared to leave for the day, when my Alison Krauss newsletter pops up in my inbox.






Do you think this means what I do!!!


I would bet on it!!

Great article on Robert Plant/Alison in today’s New York Times (or was it the Wall St. Journal?)

Hit the nail on the head about the show they do - not really bluegrassy, not Led Zeppilinly - more influenced by T Bone Burnett. Also, they share the bill with (or, he is a back up) with Stuart Duncan. It doesn’t suck.

From Today’s Wall Street Journal:

Alison Krauss And Robert Plant, Together
It’s a pairing that works a lot better than you might expect
June 14, 2008; Page W16

ROANOKE, Va. – At first blush, Led Zeppelin vocalist Robert Plant and bluegrass singer and fiddler Alison Krauss seem an unlikely pair, but they share territory on the pop landscape. Witness Ms. Krauss’s faithful version of Mr. Plant’s “Big Log” on her brother Viktor’s album “Far From Enough” or her forays into pop with her band Union Station. Then there are the mellow, velvety smooth folk-based songs on Mr. Plant’s solo recordings or the folky side of Zeppelin, a band formed by Delta and Chicago blues.

The best evidence of their commonality is the Plant-Krauss 2007 collaboration, “Raising Sand” (Rounder), produced by T-Bone Burnett. The million-selling album comprises country-flavored rock and rockabilly from the 1950s, with a touch of Kurt Weill’s Weimar Republic-era arrangements here and there, all enveloped by Mr. Burnett’s shimmering, atmospheric production. The disc provided most, but by no means all, of the material for Mr. Plant and Ms. Krauss’s current U.S. tour, which resumed here on June 2 after the troupe spent early May in Europe.

In concert, the music was a little bit looser and by turns quiet and tranquil, pounding and aggressive as the singers and their five-piece backing band tossed bluegrass numbers and several reworked Led Zeppelin songs into the mix. The singers’ versatility was matched by the band’s, which featured Mr. Burnett on guitar, Stuart Duncan on all sorts of stringed instruments, Dennis Crouch on upright bass and Jay Bellerose on drums; all of these musicians played on “Raising Sand.” Nashville’s Buddy Miller was also on guitar, succeeding the album’s Marc Ribot, and Mr. Miller’s presence deepened the country twang.

But with the exception of Mr. Crouch and Mr. Bellerose, rarely did the musicians play the same instruments in consecutive songs, nor were they always on stage at the same time. When Ms. Krauss sang the bluegrass gospel song “Green Pastures,” she was accompanied only by Mr. Crouch and Mr. Duncan on guitar. She began “Down to the River to Pray” as a solo a cappella number; soon she was joined by Messrs. Plant, Miller and Duncan singing low harmonies. “Leave My Woman Alone” was built on Ms. Krauss’s fiddle and Mr. Duncan’s mandolin, and the two played fiddle as Mr. Plant offered a decidedly country version of his solo hit “In the Mood.” Fronting the band when Ms. Krauss departed, Mr. Plant bridged the U.S. and the U.K. with “Fortune Teller,” previously recorded by the Rolling Stones and the Who but written by New Orleans’ Allen Toussaint.

Both vocalists were in extraordinary voice – perhaps not a surprise given how distinctive and commanding they usually are. But they blended so well together, whether they were singing a tight, controlled Everly Brothers-style harmony in “Rich Woman,” the night’s opener, or letting loose during a soaring reimagining of Zeppelin’s “Black Country Woman” that seemed to rattle the bunker-like Roanoke Civic Center.

Though there are no Zeppelin songs and only one composition by Mr. Plant and his Zeppelin partner Jimmy Page on “Raising Sand,” the band’s material was a focal point of the concert – and yet another opportunity to celebrate versatility. “Black Dog” arose from an interpretation of its guitar lick by Mr. Duncan on banjo, and Mr. Plant and Ms. Krauss gave it a sly, understated reading: Though they’ve been playing this version for months – you can find a performance on You Tube – they still seem delighted by the audacity of the re-creation. Later, they let their voices fly during “Battle of Evermore,” with Mr. Miller adding a gorgeous third harmony. “When the Levee Breaks,” which Zeppelin reinvented 42 years after Memphis Minnie’s version in 1929, served as a fitting conclusion to the two-hour show, with strands of country and rock flavoring the blues.

They paid tribute to Bo Diddley, who died earlier in the day, by playing his “Who Do You Love,” Mr. Plant alternating the vocal with a piercing harmonica solo. Mr. Burnett’s penchant for reverb and tremolo, his and Mr. Miller’s chugging guitars, and Mr. Bellerose’s use of maracas, toms and sticks on the drums’ rims created a pretty fair facsimile of the Bo Diddley sound and a rebuke to those who attempted to define the late musician in their eulogies by a single rhythmic pattern.

From beneath a cascading mane, the 59-year-old Mr. Plant was in a playful spirit throughout the evening, joking through song introductions and smiling and glancing out of the corner of a twinkling eye at the reserved Ms. Krauss, who did her best to avoid his distractions. Calling her “the most gifted musician I know,” he made it clear he relished the chance to perform at her side, all but laughing in joy after a song in which their vocals intertwined.

As for Ms. Krauss, who is 36 years old, her voice is so pure and potent that she can control a down-tempo number by holding a crystalline note and letting it build in volume, seemingly without effort. If the evening’s version of Tom Waits’s “Trampled Rose” was maudlin to the point of overbearing, Ms. Krauss wasn’t to blame. She sang it with disarming power.

Which isn’t to say that Mr. Plant was outclassed. The duo’s version of Doc Watson’s “Your Long Journey” was a lovely bluegrass prayer, and in “Killing the Blues” their voices formed a flawless two-part harmony. Despite an evening’s worth of resourcefulness and invention, the most magical moments were when the singers sang, together and without reservation.

• Mr. Fusilli is the Journal’s rock and pop music critic. Email him at