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Citizen Cope live in Vancouver at The Commodore Ballroom, March 30th, 2010

Citizen Cope – Live @ The Commodore Ballroom, Vancouver, BC – March 30th, 2010

reviewed by Caley Dimmock, photographed by Joshua Grafstein

Citizen Cope was ill and dope. Sorry – I couldn’t resist. Really though, Clarence Greenwood’s performance last night at The Commodore Ballroom was an amazing experience. The blue-eyed modern day bohemian, complete with band behind him, created a vibe that filled the venue and consumed everyone in it.

The opening song, “If There’s Love” set the undertone or theme of the night, which quite simply seemed to be, well, love. Friends were dancing slowly in unison, lovers were in each other’s arms, a smile was worn on drummer Jay Nichols’ face, and a sweet smell of BC bud was in the air (not that this is actually ‘allowed’ of course, or even ‘legal’ for that matter). It was a smart choice, in my opinion, to save one of his best known songs “Let The Drummer Kick” for the second spot on the set list, as opposed to opening with it.

The show made a great date option, and although I’m sure it induced some fun late night activities among couples afterwards, I almost felt a little sorry for the guys in attendance. Citizen Cope’s voice alone would turn any grown woman into a starry-eyed teenage girl, but combine his musical genius with that somewhat scruffy sexy hippie aura he pulls off oh so well, and damn… That’s all I can and will say on the matter.

The whole set flowed seamlessly, was generous in length, and was nicely rounded out by soulful renditions of “Bullet And A Target” and “Healing Hands”. My favourite part of the show though, was the encore – hands down. It was thoughtfully put together, and included a beautiful solo acoustic version of “Holdin’ On”, and was topped off with an electrifying “Sideways”.

When all was said and done, the music was alive for approximately two hours, and quite frankly, I can’t think of any other way I’d have rather spent those two hours.

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