Five reasons “all I wanna do” is listen to Sheryl Crow

Friday night, I fought through a wicked cellphone scrum to take my own series of blurry Sheryl Crow concert pics.

I joined the crowd in belting out the chorus to several of her Grammy-winning songs.

I held my own phone aloft (horizontally, of course, for Pete’s sakes, have we learned nothing?), to record a lovely series of shaky half-songs. (I generally dip my head away from the phone when I’m recording live music, in the vain hope that it will not reproduce my own suitable-for-the-shower voice, because I always sing along when the crowd joins in. Big mistake, and I make it all the time.)

I clapped wildly and called for an encore.

And, then I became a Sheryl Crow fan.

I started researching Sheryl after that concert because I wanted to know what magic elixir allowed her to look 30 years younger than her calendar age, despite some serious health battles.

I’d previously looked into her health because, like my sister Kathy, Sheryl is a breast cancer survivor. Score two for the good guys.

Here are some things I did not know about Sheryl Crow before I saw her in concert Friday night that I think make her even more remarkable:

  1. She’s older than I am. Though she doesn’t look much different from the 31-year old who wrote “Strong Enough” in 1993 and won three of her nine Grammy awards in 1995, Sheryl will turn 55 on Feb. 11. She genuinely looks and sounds amazing.
  2. She earned a state medal as a high school track athlete (which might explain the above fact).
  3. She has a tour rider that not only requests environmentally friendly service utensils and locally sourced food when possible, it also offers tips to venues on how they might become more environmentally friendly.
  4. After working very hard to get signed by a label, and putting countless hours into her first album, she scrapped it because she felt it was “overproduced”. Young artists take note and stand up for yourself and your brand.
  5. In response to her own breast cancer battle, she worked with her surgeon to develop the Sheryl Crow Imaging Center, which provides state of the art digital screening and diagnostic imaging to breast cancer patients.

I also learned the Atticus Finch-like fact that Sheryl’s dad, Wendell, a lawyer, defended civil rights and once prosecuted the Ku Klux Klan for ballot-rigging. Subsequent death threats forced him to sleep downstairs with a shotgun for a time.

I’ll spare you the shaky videos I shot Friday night, but, do yourself a favor, and take a listen to “Always on Your Side,” the duet she recorded with Sting.

And, if you want to kick off your Monday off the way I am, crank up “All I Wanna Do” and get after it!

It’s a sign of the times when the image in the cell phone in front of me is clearer than the one I shot from my position deep in the heart of the cell phone scrum.
We actually enjoyed watching the concert from this vantage point better. It gave us better dancing room, cooler air and clearer sound.
They’ve been around a while, but Ms. Crow and her band still have the moves.
She has a new album coming out in April (with her long-time writing partner Jeff Trott) and she’s going to be touring beginning in April in support of that album. I can’t wait to hear it.


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