Gillian Welch and David Rawlings
Palace of Fine Arts Theatre, 3301 Lyon (at
Tuesday, May 20, at 8:30 p.m.
Tickets are $22.50
Surprisingly, Welch and Rawlings' efforts have met considerable success from the outset, including Grammy nominations and prominent appearances on the soundtrack to the film O Brother, Where Art Thou? This commercial triumph gives the pair's downtempo persona an ironic edge, which in turn deepens its appeal to altcountry hipsters and savvy aficionados of the fashionable Americana movement. In a testament to the twosome's broad fan base in the Bay Area, Welch and Rawlings have sold out shows over the years at both the Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse and the Fillmore. On the current tour they perform at the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre. This rare concert event at one of the city's poshest venues underscores just how far the singer/songwriters have elevated the concept of roots music. With Welch at the mike, the blues and folk forms once dumped on the grubby back porch of pop culture now shine front and center like a live American Dream.