Barb Jungr - Live Review - Kerr's Corner

23 August 2009
Kerr's Corner
David Kerr

To hear Barb Jungr speak in her easy, chatty, across-the-garden-fence manner you would never suspect that she has such a powerful, haunting singing voice. Her message is simple, the world is in shit and it's getting shittier by the day. Her songs railed against the futility and tragedy of war. She was ably aided by two talented female instrumentalists: Jenny Carr on piano and Jessica Lauren on a Korg keyboard and a variety of other instruments.

The old standards from Jacques Brel, Bruce Springstein, Eric Bogle and of course Bob Dylan were there but there were one or two surprises too. Did you know that Last Train to Clarkesville was an antiwar song? Me neither. It's about a conscript heading off to fight in Vietnam. That's why the singer doesn't know if he'll be coming back. Who'd have thought it? The Monkees as antiwar protesters.

Despite the largely gloomy and pessimistic nature of the material there was a hopeful note in her magnificent upbeat rendering of Peace Train.

This passionate lady had the audience eating out of her hand with her mixture of powerful songs and chatty introductions to each piece. We could have sat there all night and not noticed the time passing. Quite a few were so impressed that they queued up afterwards to buy CDs.

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