Blackberry Smoke – Canterbury Park – Shakopee MN – September 3rd 2021

Canterbury Park presents Blackberry Smoke

Review and photos by Tommy Sommers

Full disclosure from the start, I love this band! But my love of them has wavered over the last few years. I was hesitant to see them , yet Iwalked out of the show with a t-shirt and 2 of their cd’s that I didn’t have.

I am assuming your first question would be why? My answer is out of fear. Fear of losing touch with a band that means so much to me. I watched them start to tumble into the abyss of a jam band. I hate that shit more than I can say. Especially from a band as great as Blackberry Smoke.  The last few times I saw them that’s what they did, and it really bummed me out. I was praying they would not become a mediocre jam band like The Black Crowes did. So, I disconnected for a while and covid happened.

The show the other night was the first time I had seen them in almost two years. As I was driving over to the show, I was thinking about all of this. Hoping they had changed course. And boy did they! I could not have scripted a more perfect night of music. No jam band 30-minute song bullshit. Just straight forward rock ‘n roll, which is what In came for.

They are touring right now with their new album You Hear Georgia, which is one of the songs they played. Why this is so important for me as a fan of theirs, is because they have so many amazing songs. They have a gift of writing new material that is just as good as the past songs. Not all bands are able to do that, some only can survive on their past glory days. Blackberry Smoke are in a rare class of bands along with the likes of Cheap Trick, Buckcherry and others.

Every time I have seen them, they have changed their set list, which again makes them unique. I love that I can see them and have no idea what they will play with a few exceptions. They always play my favorite “Waiting For The Thunder” and “Ain’t Much Left Of Me”. The big bonus, I was treated to one of the best songs they have recorded, I have never heard them perform live before “Sunrise In Texas”. They played several from 2016’s Like An Arrow lp. But rounded out the show with songs from every one of their albums. They even treated the crowd to “Pretty Little Lie” and “One Horse Town”, another gem.

If you love rock music that makes you want to dance and sing along, you need to invest a little time and check out Blackberry Smoke. What else do you need for me to convince you?