I feel like I went back in time last night and I would do it all over again tonight without complaint. I follow The Cedar Cultural Center on twitter, and on the 30th they tweeted, “TICKET GIVEAWAY: Tweet ‘LEE’ for a chance to win a pair of tix to @LeeFieldsMusic this Sun, 11/3!” So I did and I won! Did I know who Lee Fields was? Nope. Did I care? Nope. Live music is one of my favorite things so I was pretty confident I would enjoy it.
Turns out, it’s soul music. Right. On. I don’t go out of my way to listen to it, but this is one genre that’s best experienced live in my opinion, and if you think you wouldn’t like it, I’m sorry but you’re wrong. If you arrive early enough you might be able to snag a spot to park on the street; otherwise, there’s a pay lot just northwest of The Cedar and after 4pm it’s $3.
Local performers Sonny Knight and The Lakers opened the show and they were fantastic. Most of the guys are not what you might expect in that they’re young white guys, but Sonny is the perfect, well-seasoned black vocalist who seems plucked right out of the Sixties, along with Lee Fields. As the emcee stated at the beginning of the show, “Not dancing is not an option.” The audience comprised a wide range of ages and it was fun to see everyone getting their groove on. One of my faves was a very white, middle-aged woman with no rhythm who was completely and utterly shot down by her family when she tried to get them to get up and dance with her. She still did her thing and I give her credit for not letting her family kill her vibe. There was also a young male whose dancing was quite erratic but I loved see how much he was feeling the music.
Sonny Knight and The Lakers are what I would consider funk while Lee Fields and The Expressions are definitely more on the soul side of things – just enough to tell the difference but still make a very cohesive show. Both Sonny and Lee play to the audience with an immense amount charisma. What I also love about this music is that they feature all of the different instruments in turn, and even though this happens at most concerts, most don’t include a trombone, saxophone and trumpet. So I send a huge kudos to The Cedar and The Current for the opportunity to experience this amazing night of music. It’s something special and I love that it’s still valued in this day and age.