Review: Beth Hart (Support Arielle), Cambridge Corn Exchange

Review: Beth Hart (Support Arielle), Cambridge Corn Exchange, October 29th 2021

Reviewer/photographer: Dan Mann

Cambridge Corn Exchange was my ‘nearest’ venue and my first chance to see Beth Hart and Arielle for that matter live. So it was into the rock wagon and off down the road to a venue I’ve not previously visited.

First on was support act Arielle, who’s someone I’m not at all familiar with. To take to the stage with nothing more than a mic and an acoustic guitar in front of a capacity audience takes a lot of confidence and from the start it was clear that she is someone a bit special. She reminded me not in a small way of the late, great Eva Cassidy, with such a wonderful sweet and soulful voice.

After a short interval it was time for Beth Hart to take to the stage. As I said previously, it was a capacity crowd and a buzz of anticipation was evident.

Beth Hart is someone who wears her heart on her sleeve, and I’m not refering to her tattoos. I’d read reviews and watched concert footage of her before but they don’t do justice to actually experiencing her in the flesh as it were.

With the songs intersperced with stories of her life, whether it be  about the Korean church she was compelled to visit and finding there someone who helped her battle her addiction, or Beth emploring people to go see the fantastic Eric Gales, these annecdotes and tales of her life took a normal concert experience and made it so emotional and intimate, even in a largish venue.

Beth isn’t an artist who just stands behind a microphone, she lets the music envelope her, either moving around the stage, kneeling at the front, or sat behind the candle covered piano.

The crowd hung on her every word, shouting encouragement when Beth got emotional during her story telling, totally living the moment.

After this first time of seeing Beth Hart live, I get it. She is an artist who you need to see live to fully appreciate what a wonderful performer she is.  All I can say is I’m hooked and cannot wait to see her again.