Written by Michael Pittman
Jan 14, 2012 at 08:00 PM
ImageThis year, just like last started off on home turf at The Crighton Theater as the Montgomery County Performing Arts Society presented the highly acclaimed country music singer Suzy Bogguss. The very personable Suzy is someone you like instantly because in spite of her success you get the very comfortable feeling that she just hopes you enjoy the show. The 400+ in the audience enjoyed every moment and then some.

The 80’s and 90’s saw Bogguss achieve tremendous success with 3 gold and one platinum record and numerous singles charting towards the top of the Billboards.  Her smooth, direct vocal style earned her collaborations with names like Allison Krauss, Chet Atkins, John Hiatt and Willie Nelson. In 1989, after “Cross My Broken Heart” became a top twenty hit on the country charts she was named the Academy of Country Music’s Top New Female Vocalist. Following Aces, which she released in 1991 she was awarded the coveted Horizon Award by the Country Music Association.  Aces produced 4 singles, with 3 reaching various spots within the top 10.

She took a brief hiatus to start a family in 1995, but returned to record “Swing” with Asleep at the Wheel’s Ray Benson in 2003 and “Sweet Danger” in 2007. Interestingly, both projects charted on the Jazz charts, but failed to show on any of the country charts though both records were critical successes.

Tonight’s two set show drew much (as you would expect) from Suzy’s latest CD entitled American Folk Songbook and featured such well known folk classics as Shenandoah and Red River Valley.  Red River Valley came as the 2nd song of the encore and gave the audience the chance to sing along with the well known favorite.  Her vocal style and the refreshing and sparkling yet laid back manner seemed to fit well with the traditional folk style and reminded me of all the best traditions of Joan Baez and Emmylou Harris.

ImageBogguss didn’t neglect her country roots with songs like Aces and her signature song Hey Cinderella. I didn’t realize until tonight that she co-wrote Drive South the John Hiatt which she performed flawlessly.  The entire set list follows.

Accompanying Suzy tonight was her long standing band comprised of Pat Bergeson (Guitar/Harmonica/Vocals), Charlie Chadwick (Bass/Vocals) and Fred Carpenter (Fiddle/Mandolin/Vocals). All 3 were tops in their fields and veteran Nashville players.

Hats off to everyone at MCPAS and Director Carrie Chastellaine for another wonderful show in one of this region’s most spectacular venues. MCPAS has a great lineup of music and drama in store for the upcoming 2012 season and I urge you to find out more at www.mcpas.org. Of note is the annual Young Texas Artists music competition coming in March this year featuring plenty of young, upcoming talent from this region.


I Still Miss Someone
When She Smiled
Somewhere Between
Wildwood Flower
Careless Love

Wayfaring Stranger
Someday Soon
Night Rider’s Lament
Other Side of the Hill
Eat at Joe’s
Letting Go
Hey Cinderella
Drive South

Cowboy’s Sweetheart
Red River Valley