Patty Griffin – Belly Up, CO

It rained, snowed and the sun shined. All in one day. But that’s Colorado weather for you.

By the time we all arrived in Aspen for round two of the Slightly-Less-Epic Patty Adventure it was clear skies.

Playing at the Belly Up Tavern gave her the time to play a much longer set than last night at the Folks Fest and tell many more stories and the more intimate venue made it easy to pretend that it was your own private concert.

Hang On St. Christopher (Tom Waits)

“It’s so great to be back here!”

Love Throw
She had to start the beginning over again on this one

“It’s nice to see all of you, up here, way way way up here, where we are. We were coming up here today and we saw, well, it rained, rained, rained, rained, rained, and then we got, and then there was snow. And the sun came out, and then, then it was hot and sunny and then it rained again.”

“This is a song about a guy from my hometown and we called him ‘Chief.'”


“You guys are wound up!”


“How do you like this wonderful band I got up here? Some of you might remember Frank Swart on the upright bass. The wonderful Frank Swart from last year, if you were at any of the shows last year. Michael Longoria, the wonderful Michael Longoria from Austin, Texas on the percussion and drums. My dear old friend Doug Lancio had to take off this summer and we were lucky enough to find this wonderful young man, all the way from Milan, Italy and currently of my hometown of Austin, Texas, this is Stefano Intelisano. We’re gonna try an oldie but a goodie.”


“It’s so nice to get out of the house! I’ve been in Texas a lot this summer, in Austin, Texas, my hometown. It’s hot! But you know all about that up here too, I think it can get pretty hot up here. It’s a good time to write songs, I got a couple of, maybe one, maybe two songs thought I might make you guys the guinea pigs for. This one’s straight off the presses.”

New Song
— her set list just said “solo” so I still don’t know what she calls it… but it goes “I don’t know nothing about tomorrows” and “I want to remember you that way, wherever, wherever I go.”

“I’ve had this one floating around for a little while, most of you probably haven’t heard this.”

Time Turns Us Down

“You ever have a person in your life that you think if you, like you love them so much that if you ever met them you would probably have a heart attack and die? I have a list of those people that I love and adore and I hope I never meet because I would have a heart attack and die and I’m only 44, so. But I had an opportunity to sing a song with one of my heroes last year, her name’s Mavis Staples, she’s one of the Staples Singers. We sang this song but I don’t know what happened to it. It might be coming out sometime, at some point. Anyway, I learned this song from Mavis Staples and I’d like to try it for you right now.”

Waiting for my Child to Come Home

Go Now

“Thank you so much! It is Saturday night, we’ll kick it up a notch.”

Truth #2

“Stefano Intelisano! He’s an Italian Cajun.”


“Well, we’d like to take you back to Old Mexico. The old Caribbean, Central America is where this song comes from. This is a beautiful old Spanish song.”

Mil Besos

Someone suggested ‘Moon Song.’

“My, my, my, my, my, my, my. That’s a great idea, that request I just heard. Go and buy the new Emmylou Harris record, she sang that song. I’m kinda scared to do it now.”

Be Careful
Which she started and then stopped saying, “Wait, let’s start that over,” and sang, “All the girls in the Aspen night.”

“I can’t see you! I can’t see all of you. I don’t know if last time I was here if I told you guys this story. I think it was the first show I ever had way up in the Rockies, it was at Telluride Bluegrass Festival a long time ago and I got to do a show, I think I got to be the quick little acoustic guitar girl set right before Johnny Cash and June Cash came out.

“So I got to see them play and I really understood what a rock star was when I saw them. ‘That is a star. That is so amazing.’ They took turns, they like tag-teamed because they were not kids at this point and they went off stage and were huffing their oxygen and come back out. She’d do that, she’d take a song. He’d go off, he’d get oxygen and he’d come back. Finally, he was winding up the show and he got about three or four encores and she comes out with her purse over her arm, in her very polite southern lady way of saying, ‘We’ve had a wonderful time but we’re leaving.’ That’s one of my favorite stories ever about anybody that I remember. Amazing, amazing.”

Top of the World

“Thanks a lot! I want to dedicate this song, I don’t even know the name of the person I’m dedicating the song to, but there’s a TV set back there because they’re really nice, they make everything really nice and comfortable for us at the Belly Up, we love the Belly Up. They put the Olympics on for us and this 44-year-old mother just won a gold medal and I don’t know her name. Is anybody following that?”

(Lots of shouting)

“What is it?”

(Patty said something in jumbles which is what we must have sounded like to her.)

“Dara Torres! Yay! Dara Torres! This is for Dara.”

Stay on the Ride

“Well, I’d like to thank you all for being the best damned audience, darned audience I’ve ever played in front of. Many great audiences I’ve played in front of, what a fun way to get out of the house, spend my Saturday night in Aspen, Colorado with all of you. I wanna say thank you to the Belly Up Tavern for having us back, we loved it last year and loved it again. This is Frank Swart, the wonderful Frank Swart, Michael Longoria and Stefano Intelisano. We’re gonna leave you with this one. And uh, thank you again, so very much.”

No Bad News
At the beginning she had her capo in the wrong spot, she said, “OK! How’s this go? Alright! Ah! Where is it?”

“Thank you all so much! What a great audience!”

After an encore break she came back out saying, “Thank you so much! Thank you everybody! Where did everybody go? They’re getting a little oxygen. We’re gonna do this little song for you, you’re gonna like this one, trust me.”

MLK Song

The audience kept shouting things at her, to the point she started to get flustered.

“Those are all really great ideas.”

Long Ride Home

“I’ve got a great job. Thanks for giving me a great job. I feel like I’m on vacation. We’re gonna leave you with this song. This is an old Ray Charles song that I really like a lot. Hope we get to see you sometime soon.”

Lonely Avenue (Ray Charles)

After another encore break, she unexpectedly turned back up on the stage saying, “Thank you so much! I was just about to take my shoes off and pour myself a glass of wine and I thought, ‘I’m gonna come out and do one more song.’ I wrote this song a little while ago. It just has a voice and a bunch of words and I’m gonna sing it for you.”

A really pretty acapella song

Lyrics (as best as I could tell)
Soon as this is over, you’ll be on your way
Today could be the last day I ever see your face
As soon as this is over you’ll be out the door
Freedom bells are broken and the poor will still be poor
There’ll be bankers in shiny shoes and rowboats with no oars
And days all strung together and no one making more
There’ll be holes in all your pockets, cartwheels on the lawn
The suns will set forever, the Northern Lights will dawn
And there’ll be chances and dancers, dancing in a line
And cancers and quicksand and running out of time
So may you be lucky, may you be strong
May you live well, may you live long
May you taste, may you touch
Give all your heart and still have too much
For as soon as this is over, you’ll be on your way
Today could be the last day I ever see your face

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Photos by Nichole Wagner

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