Greg Brown had been booked for the Bull Run for months, but we hadn't gotten tickets, not knowing what we'd be doing on a mid-summer Friday. As it turned out we were going to be around and when I checked, one of the front tables was available (must have been a cancellation). So we did the after-work thing on Friday the 27th ... had a nice dinner and then sat back to see, arguably, the best folk singer in the world.
Greg came out 20 minutes late with his accompanist, Bo Ramsey. Bo played Stratocaster and another electric and was just fascinating, setting down the mellow groove and throwing in some funky leads. He played both guitars without picks, hitting the top three strings with his thumb and alternating between his first two fingers on the bottom strings.
Greg played without picks too, on his steel-string acoustic. He mostly strummed with his thumb and the two of them together made some excellent sounds. This was bluesy folk song-writing, singing, and understated playing steeped in Greg Brown's world-class style. They only did three songs we knew: Hey Baby Hey (from his 1996 disc), Iris Dement's Let the Mystery Be, and the second encore. The rest was recent originals and the songs and melodies were fascinating. As I say, quality stuff ... but before we knew it he was done! He came on late and played an hour set.
We got them back out for two encores and for the second Greg did a Pete Seeger song (This Little Light of Mine) that everyone could sing along on, but then he was gone. Oh well, Bo looked very tired and you can't expect musicians to play all night every night. We would have liked more but got home in time to watch the last hour of the Olympics opening ceremony!