Kathleen Edwards and John Doe played a show last night at the Aladdin Theater that was almost entirely collaborative; the two shared the stage for more than half the show, with each stepping off here and there to allow the other to play solo for a couple songs. They worked incredibly well together, raising the question of why these sort of impromptu collaborations don't happen more often. Doe stuck to guitar, while Edwards switched from guitar to violin to mando-guitar, and the two played a bunch of covers as well as ther own material.
Highlights were Edwards' "Asking for Flowers" and Doe's "The Golden State," which they referred to as their "hit." Edwards' material stood out; she's a phenomenally honest songwriter who cuts to the bone with nearly every song, whereas Doe is more of a seasoned journeyman. Perhaps the best part of the show was the playful banter between the two; their short tour, officially dubbed the "Hurting & Flirting" tour, was originally called, according to Doe, the "We're Not Fucking Tour."
"The We're Not Fucking Yet Tour," Edwards added.
Portland was the final show, and you could tell they had great fun with each other and the tour's end was a bittersweet moment for both. For their last song, Doe and Edwards pulled the cords out from their guitars and stepped in front of the mics for a literally unplugged rendition of the Everly Brothers' "When Will I Be Loved?" The Aladdin is just intimate enough to get away with this kind of stunt; it worked beautifully and the crowd shut up and paid attention. The short show was over before 10 pm, but nothing was lacking except perhaps the desire to know what these two would be capable of if they fronted a blaring, swinging rock band.