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Steve Forbert Link:

Steve Forbert

Steve Forbert
Live At The Bottom Line

2001, Koch Progressive

Fortunately, Steve Forbert ducked for cover during his proposed coronation as one of the New Dylans back upon his 1978 debut or who knows what megalith chain franchise he’d be toiling at today. Instead, we get these solid and dependable discs every couple of years, like a letter from a traveling friend, confirming our survivor status without fanfare or hail.

Live At The Bottom Line, recorded during a two-night stand in July 2000 is another of these reliable discs, a seventeen song thumbnail of cult favorites spanning Forbert’s twenty-five musical years. Ever the bemused and emphatic boy-next-door, Forbert and the Rough Squirrels (Clay Barnes—guitars, Bobby Lloyd Hicks—drums, Gary Solomon—bass, Nick Connolly—keyboards, and guest percussionist Rich Schell) quickly win over the hearts and minds of the converted and the curious with "Good Planets (Are Hard To Find)," "The American In Me," and "So Good To Feel Good Again." A driving, Zevon-ish "Evergreen Boy" and a rollicking, seamless medley of Chuck Berry’s "Nadine" and his own "You Can’t Win (If You Do Not Play)" are particular highlights. "Going Down To Laurel," "Romeo’s Tune" and "Complications," the three songs most people will recognize from the Forbert songbook, also receive sincere and spirited treatments.—Mike Jurkovic

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