Melissa Etheridge Closes Red Butte Garden Outdoor Concert Series With Keb’ Mo’

We’ve come to the end of our summer musical rainbow. The 2022 Red Butte Garden Outdoor Concert Series concludes on Sept. 20, 2022 with the multi-Grammy award winning musician and rock icon Melissa Etheridge. Joining her is special guest Keb’ Mo’. 

In the before times, I saw Etheridge perform at Deer Valley. Ballads like “I’m The Only One,” “Come to My Window,” and her incredible version of “Piece of My Heart,” filled the mountains with thunderous energy. I can personally testify: she’s a rocker of the first order. This fall she’s touring in support of her 2021 album One Way Out, an unearthed gem featuring never released songs harvested from her archives. Seven of the nine songs on the album are old demos from her 30-plus year career that just needed a little polishing. The final two songs on the album were recorded live in 2002 at the Roxy in Los Angeles. These are “new” classics with no expiration date. They’re full-throttle, unapologetic rock ‘n’ roll. 

Etheridge is a tour-de-force rock and blues artist who, in the midst of her battle with cancer and aggressive chemotherapy in 2005, ignited the Grammy stage with a performance of a lifetime. She beat cancer and never stopped rocking. In 2006, she received an Academy Award for Best Original Song for “I Need To Wake Up,” featured in the documentary film An Inconvenient Truth. She’s performed amazing duets with artists like Bruce Springsteen on “Thunder Road” and “You Can Sleep While I Drive” with Jewel. Etheridge is a rock ‘n’ roll treasure with a raspy, soulful voice and hard-driving guitar licks that ignite her signature power ballads.

Opening the show is Keb’ Mo’, a five-time Grammy Award winning blues artist who’s touring in support of his latest release Good To Be, a contemplative blues and folk record that feels like a homecoming journey back to his musical roots. The title track, a pedal steel and fingerpicking blues song, “Good To Be (Home Again),” sets a hopeful tone. Keb’ Mo’ isn’t afraid to shine some light on our recent darkness. He teams up with Old Crow Medicine Show for “The Medicine Man,” an upbeat Delta blues number about the pandemic, and covers Bill Withers’ “Lean On Me,” in his signature optimistic musical style.

We’re in for a great finale to the Red Butte Garden Outdoor Summer Concert Series with two masters of their craft. What a magical way to end a summer of music on the mountain. Last time I saw Etheridge, the rain poured. Let’s hope for clear skies for this show to send us into our long outdoor concert hibernation. 

  • Who: Melissa Etheridge with special guest Keb’ Mo’
  • What: One Way Out Tour
  • Where: Red Butte Garden Amphitheatre
  • When: Sept. 20, 2022
  • Tickets and info: redbuttegarden.org

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John Nelson
John Nelsonhttps://www.saltlakemagazine.com/
John Nelson covers the local music scene for Salt Lake magazine. He is a 20-year veteran of Uncle Sam’s Flying Circus with a lifelong addiction to American roots music, live music venues, craft beer and baseball.

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