Sunny Sweeney – Broadcast, Glasgow – November 28, 2023.
Written by celtic music radio on November 29, 2023
CLASSY – SUNNY SWEENEY
The only thing that the Eastside Bowl in Nashville and this below-street-level venue in Glasgow’s City Centre have in common is that I’ve now seen Sunny Sweeney play both and that makes me lucky, and very pleased.
In duo format this time round – guitarist Harley Husbands is deft and free flowing throughout – Sunny brings Texan magic to this sold-out show.
She is deliciously mischievous, really funny and delivers flawless, full-on country from a five-star song catalogue.
There are tales and a song about her dog, Doug, while others revolve around lost love, drinking, cheating and foot-in-mouth songs such as the frolicking Backhanded Compliment from her 2014 album ‘Provoked.’
In contrast, from her 2020 ‘Live at the Machine Recording Studio’ album, Poet’s Prayer is delivered with real care, unhurriedly and gorgeously.
“Let’s wash our dirty minds / With a bottle of white wine’” she sings with glee on the playfully sinful Better Bad Idea from ‘Trophy’, her excellent 2017 release and, effectively dropping the tempo again, she gives us the heartfelt A Song Can’t Fix Everything from her latest gem of an album, ‘Married Alone,’ her fifth release.
The opening line is powerful: “That song can’t bring my mother back to life / But for three minutes it’s like she’s sitting in the livin’ room” and the song comes over drenched in longing but with determination as well. It’s terrific.
As this last-night-of-the-tour gig moves into its final phase, Sunny plays Tie Me Up from ‘Married Alone’ but reveals beforehand that her Dad hates this song. And for the umpteenth time in this scintillating, 80-minute set her smile is as wide as the brim of her elegant cowboy hat.
She tells us she can’t wait to return to Scotland – she’ll be welcomed back with open arms any time.
Review and images – MIKE RITCHIE