The Jayhawks Complete Their Spanish Tour 2024 in Valencia on a High Note: La Rambleta June 17th. Casually walking onto the stage, the quartet immediately began playing the 2000 single I’m Gonna Make You Love Me from their Smile release (2000 – producer Bob Ezrin). A song that gained familiarity when featured in both soundtracks and a commercial.

But technical issues seemed to plague them. Before starting their second song they politely excused themselves and  exited the stage, for a few minutes. Then, they returned with frontman Gary Louris offering a sincere apology. However, they kept momentum by starting into The Man Who Loved Life. Different from the recording, Louris wailed on some harmonica that added emotion to the opening piano and overall energy to the song.

Along with founding member, bassist Marc Perlman, drummer Tim O’Reagan and keyboardist Karen Grotberg, the quartet is solid Midwest Americana, alternative rock at its best. This concert certainly demonstrated it. In addition to their instrumental skills, their vocal harmonies stand out superbly, blending magnificently. Five songs into the set Louris really tugged at the heartstrings as he dedicated the next song to his wife Stephanie. “She is my inspiration. I wrote this song for her before I knew her. And I knew I made her come into my life, somehow. It’s magic.”

“I don’t remember how we got this far.

All I know is I’m loving you for all the right reasons.

In my sky you’ll always be my morning star.”

All The Right Reasons – from Rainy Day Music –  2003

Louris introduced The (Dixie) Chicks song Everyone Knows which he co-wrote with them. Lyrically, a melancholy sentiment blended with a catching melody. Stumbling Through the Dark, Two Hearts, and many more of their songs rounded out the set offering a wide sample of the band catalogue.  The second encore was the band’s cover of Grand Funk Railroad’s 1975 recording. Bad Time that they recorded on Tomorrow The Green Grass (1995). A catchy love-lorne pop-hit that rallied the crowd.

Closing the concert with a third encore, Until You Came Along, Louris invited his wife Stephanie Stevenson onstage to play tambourine furthering the revelry. Fans experienced both the celebratory mood of completing their successful Spain tour, but also the displayed affection and love that Louris and Stevenson share.

Apparently, their reformation in 2009 was initiated with two performances, one on their home turf of Minneapolis and the other was Barcelona’s Primavera Sound Festival.  Quoting “We’ll see if it grows from there.” Fifteen years later and closing their five-date Spanish tour in Valencia, this proves both sustainability and a loyal fan base here in Spain. In all, The Jayhawks make for a cosy night comforting Americana music. Let’s hope they return again soon.

Report by Phillip Solomonson

Article copyright ‘24/7 Valencia’

All photos copyright Phillip Solomonson/ ‘24/7 Valencia’

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24/7 Valencia is the definitive English Speaking guide to Valencia. Extensive Listings, up-to-date and informed articles on restaurants, chill out, clubland, football, culture, arts, books, woman and much more.
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