C2C Festival: Emmylou Harris – London O2 Arena – Live Review

Emmylou Harris is an absolute legend and to be able to say “I have seen her live” is something I thought would never happen. One of the wonderful things about C2C Festival is how their share the stage with modern and traditional artists, albeit more modern but they do have at least one legend every year.

Having the slot before headliners Little Big Town is a honourable one to have and there was no way to respect and honour Emmylou more. The O2 Arena was absolutely packed for her set with so many eager fans who had clearly been waiting a very long time for this moment, after all we were in the presence of greatness.

Emmylou’s set was mostly filled with covers which she has recorded versions of over the years. Emmylou is an undeniably flawless artist live and the best at what she does. At times, I felt her set was a little bit too chilled but that has absolutely no reflection on her as an artist or performer but simply down to the fact it was Sunday, the final day and I had barely slept but as I said above, you could not fault her performance one bit.

I know Emmylou’s name, I know her face and her voice but ashamed to say I haven’t listened to her much and could not tell you much about her music or career but what Emmylou gave us in the O2 Arena was not just entertainment but also a lesson. A more than fifty year career the crowd cheered and applauded when she told them she was in her seventies. Her band were absolutely sensational and had the happiest faces I had seen all weekend – it is always nice to see artists who are truly appreciative of being on stage.

Emmylou interacted with her audience in a wonderful way and told us many stories and thanked Bob Harris for their friendship since the seventies as well as thanking the UK for being such a huge part of her career and for always giving her a warm welcome.

When Emmylou performed her closing number Boulder to Birmingham she was met with a standing ovation and I mean an entire arena of fans in absolute awe of her talent.

Emmylou Harris live at the O2 Arena – what a rarity, what a moment, one we shall never forget and will speak of for years to come.

Set List

Here I Am
Orphan Girl (Gillian Welch cover)
Making Believe (Jimmy Work cover)
Red Dirt Girl
Wheels (The Flying Burrito Brothers cover)
Luxury Liner (The International Submarine Band cover)
Pancho and Lefty (Townes Van Zandt cover)
Michelangelo 9. Green Pastures (Ralph Stanley cover)
Old Five and Dimers Like Me (Billy Joe Shaver cover)
Get Up John (Bill Monroe cover)
Shores of White Sand
The Pearl
Boulder to Birmingham

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