What: Jennifer McKee
Where: The Northwest Washington Fair
When: Friday, August 20th
Jennifer McKee brought an arsenal to the fair, and the result was a confident performance of country pop. The seven members of her backing band carried her self-assured vocals with a flood of sound, which more often than not worked in the show’s favor. The bass might have been a bit overpowering at times, and the guitars were a bit too soft, but the ultimate result was a slick, well orchestrated show that was built for a larger venue than the red bleachers on which the audience sat.
Love songs with such conventional titles as “Happily Ever After” and “Kiss Me Goodnight” seemed tailor-made for radio, yet McKee slipped in a few curveballs amidst the singles, most notably a self-effacing tune poking fun at her own celebrity crushes. A few covers showed up in the setlist, and if there was a weak point in the show, it might have been McKee’s cover of Sheryl Crow’s “Soak up the Sun,” which didn’t feel as confident as the rest of the songs.
Throughout the concert, McKee led the proceedings with poise, working the crowd with a veneer both energized and cool. While the band’s performance was excellent, McKee more than held up her end of the bargain, and the two elements played off one another and caught the audience.