Canadian folk artist, Jadea Kelly, headlined a night of folk music in Ann Arbor recently as she continues her tour across the United States and Canada.

It was ‘Take A Chance Tuesday’ at The Ark in Ann Arbor this past Tuesday (May 27, 2014). I decided to try my luck and see Del Barber with Jadea Kelly. Man did I score! Fantastic songs littered with tales of real life that fill your heart and soul.

Del Barber sauntered up on stage first with his trusty Gibson J-45 in hand. With a grin, he started into Country Girl, which is on his latest release Prairieography. This tune had us smiling and tapping our feet.

Stories are a hallmark of folk and country music and Del is a great storyteller. He followed up Country Girl with a story about where the song originated. He setup his next tune, Right Side of The Wrong, with a story about a visit to Home Depot where one of the seasoned veterans was more than willing to help him pick out paint for his kitchen You may think this song and story would be mundane, yet that couldn’t be further from the truth. That is where Del Barber shines. His storytelling and song writing is so engaging, mixing in the everyday with a philosophical wonder, that you find yourself thoroughly entertained by the experience.

Del finished up with a hilarious story about a little motel out in Alberta where he found the innkeeper and the maid getting busy in his room (and they weren’t cleaning :). This story was then fully revealed in the wonderful Peter and Jenny Lee tune. If you want to have a great time with a fantastic singer/songwriter, then you should go see Del Barber or pick up some of his music (like I did)!

After a short break, Jadea Kelly took the stage with Tom Juhas accompanying her on electric guitar. The combination of Jadea’s acoustic guitar, her voice, and the reverb soaked telecaster sweetly singing from a Fender amp, laid the foundation upon which the audience enjoyed a delightful selection of music.

Many of the songs Jadea performed were off her latest release, Clover. I didn’t get a copy of her set list, but I did catch the name of a few tunes. Count On was a tender love song with strength within its delicate nature. With a guitar full of sorrow, I’ll Be was compelling in its depths of pain. I most enjoyed Clover with its feeling of expansive landscapes.

Jadea also included a fantastic cover of Dreams by Fleetwood Mac. She is a very talented artist. I can’t stress enough how rich the music was made by the enchanting combination of acoustic and electric guitars in conjunction with Jadea’s sweet voice. If you get a chance to see her, I’m sure you’ll be a fan like I am.

It is not always true that nothing good comes for free. I found a treasure chest of great music at the Ark’s free show with Del Barber and Jadea Kelly.

Jadea Kelly:
Website | Facebook | Twitter

Del Barber:
Website | Facebook | Twitter


About The Author

Chuck is a native Michigander; he grew up in Detroit and later Pinckney. He now calls Ann Arbor home. Running is in his blood. Chuck began running at age 12 and never stopped. He has run several marathons and numerous other races. His favorite is the off trail race, Dances With Dirt, ran in Hell, Michigan. Chuck was first exposed to photography in a 7th grade class. He has been a photographer ever since, honing his skills shooting landscapes, nature, people and places, and over course, concerts. In addition to experiencing music from behind the camera, Chuck is a musician in his own right. He has been playing guitar since his teen years. He played in Detroit area metal band, Battalion, recorded two independent releases, and toured. Today, when not chasing concerts with a camera, you can find him online at his blog, Life in Michigan.