Review: Grace Potter at Red Butte

photo credit: Grace Potter website
photo credit: Grace Potter website

Thursday’s Red Butte show rocked.

Opening act Con Brio had a full band and a lead singer who channeled Michael Jackson and Bruno Mars in his sound and his dance moves. It was the most I’ve seen a Red Butte audience interact with the opening act. The band even got everyone up and dancing – a rare occurrence before the headliner.

Now, on to Grace Potter, the star of the night. I’m not sure if it’s blasphemous to liken Grace Potter to the trailblazing Stevie Nicks, but I pray that the post-Fleetwood Mac gods will forgive me, because Potter has that same girl-power rocker vibe that one doesn’t easily forget.

She flipped her long blonde hair and danced all around the stage while belting out her rock anthems with serious talent. Potter is loud, but she definitely knows what she’s doing when she pushes her vocal range. After all, this is rock ‘n’ roll.

My favorite moments of the show were when Potter chose to rock out on a bright red Gibson Flying V guitar (just in case anyone had doubts about her rocker status).

Songs like “Look What We’ve Become” and “Empty Heart” showed that Potter has made a great transition into a solo act. She loves her sound, and that love radiates in her performance.

However, just because Potter’s gone solo doesn’t mean she left her songs from the Grace Potter & the Nocturnals days behind. Potter put new twists on “Turntable” and “The Lion, The Beast, The Beat,” songs that were more indie pop before Potter added her solo rocker sound. Potter also gave some well-deserved love to her band, the Magical Midnight Roadshow. Her lead guitarist switched to an acoustic for a soft, intimate duet with Potter that the crowd was too loud to appreciate, until they realized what was happening and listened up.

Potter threw on at least four different ponchos over her minidress during the night, which gave me serious boho outfit envy, but I digress. Potter is an artist first and a performer second. She really does care about her shows, and it’s a privilege to watch. Her signature sound doesn’t get old.

“If rock ‘n’ roll can ring through these beautiful mountains like this, then something magical is going on,” Potter said.

Something magical, indeed. Potter’s rich, sultry voice and her incredible energy made for a rare show that I’ll be talking about for a long time.

Salt Lake Magazine
Salt Lake Magazine
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