Live Review: Joe Jackson

Joe Jackson
Town Hall, NYC
April 16, 2008
By David Chiu

While Berlin remains his current residence, Joe Jackson made a recent stop to his old home of New York City as part of his current tour in support of his latest album Rain. Joined by the two members of his original band from the late ‘70s, bassist Graham Maby and drummer Dave Houghton, Jackson performed a set drawing from the new album and some old favorites. Just like his eclectic career, the music from the set list all was equally diverse, combining power pop, classical, a bit of rock and jazzy soul. Behind his grand piano, Jackson started off the show with “Steppin’ Out” and went deep with a lot of the songs from Rain, which is his strongest record in years, particularly the ballad “Wasted Time,” the lovely “A Place in the Rain,” and the rollicking “Good Bad Boy.” Older songs that Jackson and hand performed such as “On Your Radio,” “One More Time,” and “It’s Different Girls” still rocked even without the guitar from the original recorded versions. While Jackson is renowned for his soulful and feisty voice, he is also a great piano player as this show reminded the folks; Maby and Houghton were equally superb. The encore included the obvious signature tune “Is She Really Going Out With Him?” and the ballad from the Night and Day album “A Slow Song.”

Set List:

Steppin’ Out
Invisible Man
Goin’ Downtown (?)
Wasted Time
Rush Across the Road
Frankie and Ava (Suzanne Vega cover)
Stranger Than Fiction
On Your Radio
Solo (So Low)
The Uptown Train
Chinatown
Scary Monsters (David Bowie cover)
It’s Different for Girls
Good Bad Boy
One More Time
A Place in the Rain

Encore:

You Can’t Get What You Want (Till You Know What You Want)
Is She Really Going Out With Him?
A Slow Song

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