Onstage Thursday night at Cat's Cradle, Alejandro Escovedo told a very funny story about asking his teenage son Paris what he thought of his old man's music. "It's old music," Paris reportedly replied, "for old people."
Well, maybe so. But you still can't find a better example of rocking gracefully on into one's later years than Escovedo, who turned 60 years old this month and is still out there offering rocked-up pearls of wisdom. That anecdote introduced the song "Down in the Bowery," a fatherly prayer with one of my favorite lyrics from last year: "I hope you live long enough to forget half the stuff that they taught you."
In contrast to some of his lavishly orchestrated bands of tours past, Escovedo's current band is a streamlined four-piece featuring lead guitarist David Pulkingham. Long stretches of Thursday's show featured noise, glorious noise, with Escovedo and Pulkingham trading salvos of feedback on a set mostly drawn from Escovedo's 2010 release "Street Songs of Love"; they also fired up the riff to Led Zeppelin's "Black Dog" at one point (and I was only sorry that he didn't actually sing that one).
Still, my favorite part came when they switched over to acoustic guitars for a couple of songs, the instrumental "Fort Worth Blue" followed by the beautifully dreamy majesty of "Rosalie" -- a sweet song of love. Can't wait for him to come back...
(photo credit: Alex Howard)